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Thread: What demense size should you keep

  1. #1

    What demense size should you keep

    Hello,

    I am new to this game, never played the first installment of Crusader kings.
    So far I am really enjoying this game despite the overwhelming initial complexity of it all.
    I have a couple of questions.

    Should you always try to keep the maximum demense size.
    Is it normal to only make under 2 gold per month ruling 3-4 counties?

  2. #2
    I generally keep all titles in the primary duchy where I am located, and nothing more.
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  3. #3
    a pretty good rule of thumb for me is: all county titles in two duchies (one will contain my capital county) + all baronies that might already exist in those two.

    i usually go for an average of 8-9 counties/baronies. if i am reasonably sure following rulers will have a higher demesne limit i go up to 10-11 though, but its a bit risky.
    most importantly i try to fill my capital county with baronies before anything else. free slots in other counties in my two duchies will be cities that get a mayor
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  4. #4
    Sergeant Ducksox's Avatar
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    I'd say keep what your limit is. I typically just keep a demesne size of 15 (Gavelkind + Stewardship 20 in both Duke and Duchess ftw) and never actually rise above the level of a duke, rather keeping many different counts as my vassals, allowing me to keep counties throughout my Grand Duchy, though with a core area.

  5. #5
    Captain death&d3cay's Avatar
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    Personally I max my demesne all the time, I usually have around 12. But I am paying Leon so it is quite easy to acquire new lands when I need them.

    I also hoard Duke titles, and spread my demesne across several duchies to avoid my vassals having 50% of the counties in them. I tend to manage my vassal relations well, and rarely have any below 50 and only rarely have anyone in the negative (usually only when a new hier takes over), so I just eat the penalty for having too many duke titles.

  6. #6
    General Finnish Dragon's Avatar
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    I agree that keep to the limit. Let´s say that you start as William the Conqueror and you beat Saxons and Norwegians. In that case, I would keep all counties in Kent and Essex and the duke titles as well. In order to keep your vassals subdued you will need troops from the demesne provinces.

    I started a game as the count of Vermandois and I plotted to kill the sons of count of Amiens because his eldest daughter was my wife and I had son. Finally, the count of Amiens died, my wife inherited him and when she died my son inherited her. My son was the Duke of Normandy. Soon, my son participated in a rebellion against the King of France. At this point, the king made a very big mistake. He gave me the Ducal title of Valois which included Ill-de-France(Paris). The rebellion was crushed but my son wasn´t arrested. My character died and my son had both ducal titles of Normandy and Valois. Unfortunately, the King controlled most of Normandy. There were civil wars in France during the following decades which helped me to take over all counties in Normandy. After that the king has the king title and one province. Yes, he is still the king but he is weak because he doesn´t have much troops from his demesne provinces while I am expanding towards Anjou, Britanny and Flanders.

  7. #7
    Man I usually only go with 8 since it means I never have a leader who requires me to get rid of a few. But then again I hate Gavelkind.
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  8. #8
    besies additional castles in your capital (where your steward collects taxes and the marshal recruits troops) there is no substantial gain to be had with more counties anyway. most of your troops will come from vassals at some point.

    an argument could be made for money though, but thats a question of minmaxing it anyway
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  9. #9
    Thanks for the advice guys.

    I just quit my Wales campaign because I essentially had only one country in my demense while accidentally giving my uncle two of the four in my kingdom.

    I am going to try again but this time keep everything to myself.

  10. #10
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    I do the two duchy thing. They'll be the core lands that I develop over the years and try never to give away. I'll hold other lands if I obtain them, and my demesne limit and vassal relations allow. But I won't spend money on them.

    Although I've been playing around with gavelkind, and that can make keeping reasonable demesne a nightmare.

  11. #11
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    In general, I try to keep my demesne at the limit, but not over. I also try to expand the limit by breeding kings with good stewardship values. However, I wouldn't go so far as to take gavelkind for the demesne size boost. It just seems like more trouble than it's worth.
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  12. #12
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    I normally play as Sicily, and i keep Sicily (The island, and Tunis when i'ved conquered it). So between 4 and 9 demesne.
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  13. #13
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    I'm pretty new to the game, too, so I'm confused a bit about demesne size, speaking specifically about Scotland (since most people suggest playing as the Scots for the first game or three). My demesne size at the start is 1/6. So I basically have room to create/keep five more titles. At the very start of the game in September of 1066, the warning pop up indicates I have the ability to create one additional title (duchy of such and such, can't remember right now). Would that mean in creating that title I would increase my demesne size to 2/6?

    I feel like the concept of demesne is a lot simpler than I'm making it out to be, but for some reason my mind's farting.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by RudyHuxxxxtable View Post
    I'm pretty new to the game, too, so I'm confused a bit about demesne size, speaking specifically about Scotland (since most people suggest playing as the Scots for the first game or three). My demesne size at the start is 1/6. So I basically have room to create/keep five more titles. At the very start of the game in September of 1066, the warning pop up indicates I have the ability to create one additional title (duchy of such and such, can't remember right now). Would that mean in creating that title I would increase my demesne size to 2/6?

    I feel like the concept of demesne is a lot simpler than I'm making it out to be, but for some reason my mind's farting.
    Desmesne size is the number of Baronies (Cities or Churches) you control, it has nothing to do with titles.
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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by RudyHuxxxxtable View Post
    I'm pretty new to the game, too, so I'm confused a bit about demesne size, speaking specifically about Scotland (since most people suggest playing as the Scots for the first game or three). My demesne size at the start is 1/6. So I basically have room to create/keep five more titles. At the very start of the game in September of 1066, the warning pop up indicates I have the ability to create one additional title (duchy of such and such, can't remember right now). Would that mean in creating that title I would increase my demesne size to 2/6?
    I feel like the concept of demesne is a lot simpler than I'm making it out to be, but for some reason my mind's farting.
    Yup,you're right, it is simpler, though an understandable confusion. Desmesne is different from titles. There are 5 tiers of titles: Emperors rule kings who rule dukes who rule counts who rule barons. Barons rule actual fortified places in a province, the city, castle, or church. Those baron level titles are what count against your desmsne limit, the other higher titles don't because they aren't additional physical places you must directly rule.
    What other franchise could make a player nostalgic for consanguinity inheiritance law?

  16. #16
    With a size of ~7 your on the safe side. Even in a near to worst case scenario [1 year old king] you should be able to keep all of your demesne.
    With a size of 10+ your playing on the edge. In the same scenario as above you'll have to give some land away.
    But always get a cluster of 5, even a count needs a powerbase.

    But it also depends on your play style and what situation your in. As a duke/count you barely get 7 Castles and you wont face many revolts where you need reliable manpower. As a king/big duke you face a rebellion from time to time so keeping a big demnse helps with these revolts and keeps one duke from getting to big.

    @Tax: With ~4 counties you should be able to get alot more then 2g/month. The Problem is either your demnse is way to big [heavy tax penalty] or ,what i think is the case, your not bulding castle cities/villages.
    Also set the city/church tax laws higher if your popular with your vassels.
    http://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/...-guide-to-CKII

    Personaly iam not a fan of buliding extra castles/cities/chruches in a free slot, atleast not early on. For 700g you get ~2 lvl 3 castle cities, what gives you the desperately needed money. Later on with 20g/month and a backup of ~1000g is it a nice way to grow.

  17. #17
    Agreed, from a straight cash return on investment perspective never build a new castle until you've maxed out income improvements in all your existing ones. Build schools and the infrastructure to improve them in your capital province's city(cities) and church(es) early for the tech boost, then forget about cities or churches until you've maxed out all the castles you can keep with your desmesne limit. Then start building up your direct vassals' cities (or churches if you can keep the bishops onside).
    What other franchise could make a player nostalgic for consanguinity inheiritance law?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pode View Post
    Yup,you're right, it is simpler, though an understandable confusion. Desmesne is different from titles. There are 5 tiers of titles: Emperors rule kings who rule dukes who rule counts who rule barons. Barons rule actual fortified places in a province, the city, castle, or church. Those baron level titles are what count against your demesne limit, the other higher titles don't because they aren't additional physical places you must directly rule.
    Thanks for the reply! That's starting to clear it up. Okay, so basically, I can directly, comfortably control a number of barons (castles, cities, churches) up to my demense limit, anything after that would make my vassals upset. But then how specifically do I increase my demesne? Aren't those barons controlled by my vassals at game start? And what function takes direct control? Hopefully my questions aren't obtuse.

  19. #19
    Increasing your desmesne holdings comes from conquest. Press claims, invade heathens, beat rebelling vassals and banish them, etc. You can also inheirit them, or demand that a vassal give you his (but nobody likes it when you do that).
    Increasing your desmesne *limit* comes from improving your ruler's stewardship (spam the amass wealth ambition), marrying a spouse with good stewardship (you get the effect of half of theirs for desmesne limit), taking a higher tier of title (count<duke<king<emperor), adopting gavelkind succession (+30%), and researching legalism in your capital province.
    What other franchise could make a player nostalgic for consanguinity inheiritance law?

  20. #20
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    I usually hold on to the biggest counties (5-6 holdings) in my realm so as to have at least a nice personal army if things go sour for me. Even though you get reduced taxes from the holdings you would still get the most from the biggest provinces.

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