Every person or even some groups of people want to have their own safe place to call home. On City of Shadows we have a system setup to help defend and raise more space. While this is not a replacement for the various Lair-Type Merits, this is used in conjunction with them to make sure the area around the lair is safe and in the control of the appropriate groups.
Why does someone want territory? While there as many justifications for wanting territory as there are Cadres who claim it, the simple fact is that, for the inhuman denizens of the world forced to live a shadowed life, often pretending to be human, that they need it. Few creatures can survive alone, and none do so in a vacuum. The most hardened, isolated Gangrel Elder still needs blood to subsist on, even if the draw of city lights left them centuries prior.
What does territory do? Territory provides a Cadre with protection, in the form of myriad defenses. Hardened walls and pit traps are equally important as zoning commissions and a press of bodies. In game terms, there are four bonuses to every territory:
- Unique Bonus
- This is a bonus available only to those who claim a given territory, such as unique knowledge or access to a rare resources.
- Cost Reward
- This is a trio of merits which, when purchased by a Cadre member, awards 1 beat, through fulfilling a Condition, as each merit relates (somewhat) to the nature of each neighborhood. PCs must be the Owners of the Territory at the time of purchasing the merit in order to receive the Cost Reward.
- A specialty that Cadre members can access at all times as though it were on their sheet, as long as they are Owner of that Territory.
- When within a territory they control, Cadre members receive +2 Dice to react to surprises and ambushes.
Here is a list of the common terms used in the system that we use to maintain and control the Claimed Territories of various Cadres.
- A blanket term for Packs/Coteries/Motleys/Cabals (or mixed sphere groups)
- A geographically contiguous area that can be controlled, either physically, legally, or socially.
- Open Territory
- A Territory that has not been Claimed.
- Claimed Territory
- A Territory that has been Claimed by a Cadre through Influence
- Location Value (LV)
- A numerical representation of the difficulty and energy needed to secure an area.
- A numerical representation of the successes achieved towards securing an area.
- The sum total of assets and skills a Cadre can devote to claiming and maintaining territory. This creates a die pool that can be used to enhance Territory Actions, both offensive and defensive. This is an abstraction of a groups total power, not an exact measure.
Clout is composed of the sum of approved merits, minus Power Stat(s) across the group.
+Resource points and +coins can be spent to bolster that number temporarily, reflective of using on-hand, disposable income to assist you. This does give templates that do not have a power stat (Primal Urge, Gnosis, Wyrd, Blood Potency, etc) an advantage over supernaturals when figuring out their personal and group Clout.
What is the Territory system
Obtaining territory is not simply as easy as moving in to an unclaimed neighborhood, even if you killed the previous residents. To obtain territory, a Cadre must invest time and resources in relation to the Location Value (LV) of the territory. Territories have a LV, whether claimed or not. The hows and whys of a LV are abstractions designed to cover everything from bribing local politicians, haggling with local gangs, bartering or intimidating local residents and simple construction and renovations. This system is designed to be simple, fun, and easy to use, not necessarily accurate and all-encompassing.
How does the system work
There are only two basic actions for which a Clout pool can be used: building Influence and destroying Influence. Both use a Cadre's Clout as the base dice pool and each success earns one level of Influence built or destroyed. Resources and Coins can be spent on a one for one basis to add dice to any single Clout roll. There are no other modifiers to Clout rolls. Clout refreshes once a week and does not roll over.
To claim an Open Territory a Cadre must build a number of Influence equivalent to the LV of that Territory. Once the level of Influence in an Open Territory matches the LV, the Cadre then become the Owner and the Territory becomes Claimed. The Owner of a Claimed Territory receives all benefits of that Territory for the duration of being that Owner. Note: no Influence can be built over the LV.
Example: If the Open Territory LV is 15, you must raise your Influence in that Territory to 15/15 to become the Owner.
To take over a Claimed Territory from another Owner you must first remove the Owner by destroying all Influence. Each success on a Clout roll to destroy Influence subtracts one level of Influence that the Owner has invested in that Territory's LV. When all Influence has reached 0, the Owner is removed and the Territory becomes Open. Note: no Influence can be lowered below 0.
Example: If the Claimed Territory LV is 15, you must destroy the Influence in that Territory to 0/15 to remove the Owner.
Influence can be built and destroyed by different Cadres at the same time. Each week the influence built and destroyed will be tallied based on the Clout rolls with a final tally for the week on a one for one basis.
Example: Territory A (LV 15) is Owned by Cadre X (15/15 Influence).
Week 1 Cadre Y destroys Influence in Territory A and achieves 4 successes. Cadre X's Influence is now 11/15. (15 - 4 = 11)
Week 2, Cadre Y destroys Influence in Territory A and achieves 3 successes. Cadre X builds Influence in Territory A and achieves 2 successes. Cadre X's Influence is now 10/15. (11 - 3 + 2 = 10)
Week 3, Cadre Y destroys Influence in Territory A and achieves 2 successes. Cadre Z also destroys Influence in Territory A and achieves 2 successes. Cadre X builds Influence in Territory A and achieves 5 successes. Cadre X's Influence is now 11/15. (10 - 2 - 2 + 5 = 11) Despite losing influence both in Week 1 and Week 2, Cadre X remains the Owner and retains all benefits. They will continue to retain those benefits until their Influence is reduced to 0 and the Territory reverts to being Open, and they are removed as Owners.
If two or more Cadres attempt to claim the same unclaimed Territory, the process is contested. All Cadres will roll their Clout pools and successes will be cancelled out by all other opposing Influence, the same as with destroying Influence actions. Any Cadre with Influence remaining builds Influence in that Territory. This does mean that with enough competing Influences, no one may build any Influence.
Example: Territory A (LV 15) is Open (0/15 Influence).
Week 1 Cadre Y (0/15 Influence) builds Influence in Territory A and achieves 4 successes. Cadre X (0/15 Influence) builds Influence in Territory A and achieves 3 successes.
Cadre Y now has 1/15 Influence in Territory A. (0 + 4 - 3 = 1) Cadre X has 0/15 Influence in Territory A (0 + 3 - 4 = -1) Note: no Influence can be lower than 0.
Week 2, Cadre Y (1/15 Influence) builds Influence in Territory A and achieves 3 successes. Cadre X (0/15 Influence) builds Influence in Territory A and achieves 4 successes.
Cadre Y now has 0/15 Influence in Territory A. (1 + 3 - 4 = 0) Cadre X has 1/15 Influence in Territory A (0 + 4 - 3 = 1)
Week 3, Cadre Y (0/15 Influence) builds Influence in Territory A and achieves 4 successes. Cadre X (1/15 Influence) builds Influence in Territory A and achieves 5 successes. Cadre Z (0/15 Influence) also starts to build Influence in Territory A and achieves 6 successes.
Cadre Y's Influence is now 0/15. (0 + 4 - 5 - 6 = -7) Cadre X's Influence is now 0/15. (1 + 5 - 4 - 6 = -4). Cadre Z's Influence is now 0/15. (0 + 6 - 4 - 5 = -3)
Despite gaining influences in Week 1 and Week 2, neither Cadre becomes the Owner nor receives and Territory benefits. They will not receive those benefits until one of their Influences is built to 15 and the Territory becomes Claimed with that Cadre declared as Owner.
Owner Upkeep: Upon becoming the Owner of a Territory, 5 Clout points must be used every week to maintain that Territory's Influence, effectively lowering that Cadre's weekly Clout pool by 5. Vacating a Territory by ceding Ownership will return that upkeep to the Clout pool.
Support: A Cadre's Influence actions can be used in support of another Cadre. The system remains the same, except when declaring in support of another Cadre, the successes are simply added to that Cadre's total rather than working against them.
Splitting: A Cadre can split their Clout pool for the week in any number of ways to wield their Influence, however, the declaration of all spent Clout must be made at the same time (for book-keeping and sanity's sake).
Fiefdoms: A Cadre can own multiple Territories, but must maintain Owner Upkeep for each one separately.
How do I use the system in game
|Territory||Value||Sphere||Specialty||Cost Reward||Unique Bonus||Status|
|Albany Park||15||Mage||Hiking (Survival)||Greyhound, Multilingual, Library||With an hours work, a meal can be found to satisfy any dietary requirement. Even the undead.||Open|
|Archer Heights||15||Werewolf||Homeless (Streetwise)||Anonymity, Barfly, Sympathetic||A safe-place in the back of the Greater Chicago Food Depository, that can be used once a a week.||Open|
|Armour Square||20||Changeling||Research (Academics)||Library, Good Time Management, Eidetic Memory||Once a month, spend a Resources point to get a plus +3 to a research roll.||Open|
|Ashburn||15||Mage||Ghost (Occult)||Danger Sense, Eye for the Strange, Empath||Once per month, spend a point of Willpower to be able to find out something about a death.||Open|
|Auburn Gresham||15||Mage||Flirting (Socialize)||Direction Sense, Defender, Vice-Ridden||Once a month, spend a Resources point to be able to cover your tracks for a crime or failed event.||Open|
|Austin||20||Vampire||Props (Crafts)||Stunt Driver, Allies (Media), Fame||Once a week, spend a Resources point to get access to a film business prop for a day.||Open|
|Avalon Park||15||Changeling||Manners (Socialize)||Common Sense, Patient, Closed Book||Once a month, spend a resource point to procure a dead body.||Open|
|Avondale||15||Vampire||Cuisine (Crafts)||Language (Polish), Hardy, Taste||Once a week, find someone willing to assist with an artistic project (+3 to Crafts roll)||Open|
|Belmont Cragin||15||Vampire||Neighbors (Empathy)||Sympathetic, Virtuous, Patient||Once a month, gain the benefits of therapy as per a therapist with the Empath merit.||Open|
|Beverly||20||Mage||Architecture (Academics)||Iron Will, Contacts (Finance), Staff||Once a week, spend a Resources point to reserve a section in the Beverly Arts Center for an evening.||Open|
|Bridgeport||25||Changeling||Baseball (Academics)||Bar Fly, Demolisher, Good Time Management||Once a month, spend Resources point to host a suite at a Sox game and gain +3 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|Brighton Park||15||Werewolf||Trains (Drive)||Encyclopedic Knowledge (Drive), Multilingual, Hobbyist Clique||Once a month, spend a Resources point to access an empty freighter car for any personal use.||Open|
|Burnside||20||Changeling||Murderous Stare (Intimidation)||Quick Draw, Vice-Ridden, Air of Menace||Once per week, spend a point of Resources to gain access to Staff (Gangbangers: Streewise) for one day.||Open|
|Calumet Heights||15||Changeling||First Aid (Medicine)||Patient, Tolerance for Biology, Indomitable||Once per month, use up to 2 dots worth of hospital-specific Resources.||Open|
|Chatham||15||Changeling||Business (Academics)||Allies (BBB), Common Sense, Vice-Ridden||Once per month, succeed at a social roll (difficulty 2) to hire services as per the Fixer merit.||Open|
|Chicago Lawn||15||Werewolf||Gardening (Crafts)||Multilingual, Holistic Awareness, Sympathetic||Once a month, use authentic Middle Eastern catering to give +2 to social rolls at a public event (if the food is served).||Open|
|Clearing||20||Werewolf||Security (Larceny)||Fixer, Allies (Transportation), Automotive Genius||Once a month, spend a Resource point to move an illegal item Size 1 or 0 in or out of the city.||Open|
|Douglas||20||Changeling||History (Academics)||Encyclopedic Knowledge (History), Area of Expertise, Virtuous||Once per month, use a Resources point to make use of a college intern as Retainer 3 for a day.||Open|
|Dunning||20||Vampire||Mental Health (Science)||Meditative Mind, Patient, Iron Will||Once per month, spend a Resources point to use the personal information of a mental patient as Alternate Identity 2.||Open|
|East Garfield||15||Vampire||Real Estate (Academics)||Direction Sense, Holistic Awareness, Demolisher||Once a month, spend a point of Resources to retain the services of Retainer 3 (Day Laborer) for day.||Open|
|East Side||20||Changeling||Shelter (Survival)||Direction Sense, Iron Stamina, Hobbyist Clique||Once per month, spend a Resources point to gain the services of a guide for +3 to Survival rolls for a day.||Open|
|Edgewater||20||Mage||Carousing (Socialize)||Holistic Awareness, Multilingual, Safe Place||Once per week, can obtain a moderately fresh corpse from Graceland Cemetery without a roll.||Open|
|Edison Park||20||Mage||Foraging (Survival)||Direction Sense, Meditative Mind, Fleet of Foot.||Once per week obtain holy water or sacrament blessed with true faith from the Saint Juliana Catholic Church.||Open|
|Englewood||15||Werewolf||Gangs (Streetwise)||Danger Sense, Vice-Ridden, Tolerance for Biology||Once a week, make a social roll to fulfill any Vice.||Open|
|Forest Glen||25||Mage||Gardening (Crafts)||Fleet of Foot, Inspiring, Table Turner||Spend a point of Resources to gain +1 to social rolls as per Striking Looks for a day.||Open|
|Fuller Park||15||Changeling||Urban Ecology (Science)||Vice-Ridden, Untouchable, Anonymity||Once a month, spend a Resources point to cover up a minor crime by dead-ending the evidence in the neighborhood.||Open|
|Gage Park||20||Werewolf||Running (Athletics)||Parkour, Fleet of Foot, Greyhound||Once per week, satisfy a Pride virtue by winning an athletic event.||Open|
|Garfield Ridge||20||Werewolf||Rivers (Survival)||Multilingual, Interdisciplinary Specialty, Direction Sense||Once per month, spend a Resources point to have a weatherproof shelter set up in the marshes for +2 to survival rolls for one outing.||Open|
|Grand Boulevard||15||Changeling||History (Academics)||Virtuous, Iron-Willed, Inspiring||Once a month, use a point of Resources to reserve the Harold Washington Cultural Center for an evening.||Open|
|Grand Crossing||15||Changeling||Engineering (Science)||Patient, Indomitable, Automotive Genius||Once per month, succeed on a social roll to get advice from a mechanic for +3 to one Crafts project.||Open|
|Hegewisch||15||Changeling||Wetlands (Survival)||Holistic Awareness, Patient, Virtuous||Once a week, succeed on a social roll to find a place to sleep in the Harbor Estates trailer park.||Open|
|Hermosa||20||Vampire||Finance (Academics)||Language (Spanish), Good Time Management, Taste||Once a month, make a social roll (difficulty 3) to gain Safe Place 5 for a night in the Honduran Consulate.||Open|
|Humboldt Park||15||Vampire||Trends (Socialize)||Taste, Language (Spanish), Virtuous||Once per week, with a successful social roll, get a table at any restaurant on Division Street or free access to any one meal.||Open|
|Hyde Park||30||Changeling||Industry (Science)||Library (Any), Encyclopedic Knowledge (Any), Interdisciplinary Specialty (Any)||Once a month, spend a Resources point to gain access to a student intern as a Retainer 3 for one day.||Open|
|Irving Park||20||Vampire||Architecture (Academics)||Common Sense, Taste, Multilingual||Once per week, make a social roll to get a table at any restaurant in the neighborhood without notice and gain +2 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|Jefferson Park||20||Mage||Navigation (Streetwise)||Barfly, Safe Place, Hobbyist Clique||Once per week find a safe place to sleep.||Open|
|Kenwood||20||Changeling||Calming (Empathy)||Common Sense, Holistic Awareness, Library (Academics)||Once a month, use a Resources point to reserve a section of the Blackstone Library after hours and gain +2 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|Lakeview||25||Vampire||Emotions (Empathy)||Barfly, Taste, Hobbyist Clique (Athletics, Expression, Crafts)||Once a month, with a successful social roll (difficulty 3) fulfill any Virtue||Open|
|Lincoln Square||15||Mage||Bureaucracy (Politics)||Allies(Government), Retainer, Staff||Once per month, you can find a willing and suitable mortal "employee" for a task. (Permanent acquisition requires Experience Expenditure.)||Open|
|Lincoln park||25||Vampire||History (Academics)||Encyclopedic Knowledge (Academics), Good Time Management, Contacts (Finance)||Once a month, spend a Resources point to gain access to the Lincoln Park Zoo after hours and gain +2 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|Logan Square||20||Vampire||Landscaping (Crafts)||Multilingual, Virtuous, Inspiring||Once a week, succeed in a social roll (difficulty 2) to find a Safe Space 2 in one of the neighborhood churches or parks.||Open|
|Loop||50||Neutral||Business (Academics)||Resources, Retainer (Any), Status (Any)||Once a week, spend a Resources point to reserve any business, theater, or restaurant for the entire day and gain +3 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|Lower West Side||15||Vampire||Art (Crafts)||Multilingual, Patient, Common Sense||Once a week, succeed on a social roll to find a Safe Place 2 within the neighborhood.||Open|
|McKinley Park||15||Werewolf||Small Talk (Socialize)||Hardy, Closed Book, Hobbyist Clique||One per month, succeed on a social roll to reserve the park for a special event.||Open|
|Montclare||15||Vampire||Suburbs (Academics)||Interdisciplinary Specialty (Suburbs), Good Time Management, Virtuous||Once a month, use a point of Resources to use a neighborhood teen as Retainer 2.||Open|
|Morgan Park||20||Mage||Shelter (Survival)||Eye for the Strange, Meditative Mind, Trained Observer||Once a week, succeed on a Survival roll to find a Safe Place 3 for a night somewhere in the neighborhood.||Open|
|Mount Greenwood||15||Mage||Legal Rights (Academics)||Safe Place (1,2), Defender, Small Unit Tactics||Once per month, spend a Resources point to organize a community rally.||Open|
|Near North||35||Neutral||Finance (Academics)||Allies (Media), Resources, Taste||Once per week, succeed on a social roll to acquire the use of a lavish venue for an evening and gain +2 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|Near South||35||Neutral||Football (Athletics)||Iron Stamina, Library (Any), Encyclopedic Knowledge (Any)||Once a week, succeed on a social roll (difficulty 2) to gain access to any museum in the neighborhood after hours for an evening and gain +2 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|Near West Side||35||Vampire||First Aid (Medicine)||Library (Any), Parkour, Contacts (Any)||Once a week, succeed on a social roll (difficulty 2) to acquire a suite at the United Center for an evening and gain +3 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|New City||15||Werewolf||Nightlife (Socialize)||Closed Book, Taste, Patient||Once a month, spend a Resources point to throw a private party at any club in the neighborhood.||Open|
|North Lawndale||15||Vampire||Security Systems (Larceny)||Vice-Ridden, Anonymity, Relentless||Once a week, spend a Resources point to satisfy any Vice.||Open|
|North Park||25||Mage||Cross Culture (Socialize)||Barfly, Multilingual, Iron Stamina||Once a month find someone that can translate a spoken or written language to english.||Open|
|North center||20||Vampire||Public Speaking (Expression)||Virtuous, Multilingual, Contacts (Media)||Once a month, succeed on a social roll to have a sponsored community event thrown with the theme of your choosing.||Open|
|Norwood Park||20||Mage||First Aid (Medicine)||Common Sense, Tolerance for Biology, Direction Sense||Once per month acquire fresh bio-waste from the hospital.||Open|
|O'Hare||20||Mage||Black Market (Streetwise)||Fixer, Pusher, Support Network||Once per month find someone to courier a message of package. Treat it as Anonymity 2 for tracking purposes.||Open|
|Oakland||15||Changeling||Carpentry (Crafts)||Eye for the Strange, Hobbyist Clique (Any), Safe Space||Once a week get baked goods from neighbors.||Open|
|Portage Park||15||Vampire||Bargains (Persuasion)||Fleet of Foot, Language (Polish), Taste||Spend a point of Resources to be able to obtain any meal at any time from within the neighborhood.||Open|
|Pullman||20||Changeling||Engineering (Science)||Encyclopedic Knowledge (Trains), Direction Sense, Patient||Once a week, succeed on a social roll (difficulty 3) to have a public space in the neighborhood reserved for private use for a day.||Open|
|Riverdale||15||Changeling||Environment (Science)||Air of Menace, Vice-Ridden, Anonymity||Once a week, spend a point of Resources to fulfill any Vice.||Open|
|Roger's Park||20||Mage||Running (Athletics)||Iron Stamina, Multiligual, Holistic Awareness||Once per month, spend a resource point to hire students for a +3 bonus to a research check.||Open|
|Roseland||15||Changeling||Rumors (Streetwise)||Indomitable, Closed Book, Hobbyist Clique||Once per month, find an abandoned house to occupy for a day as a Safe Place 3.||Open|
|South Chicago||15||Changeling||Bureaucracy (Politics)||Multilingual, Patient, Trained Observer||Once a month, on a successful politics roll (difficulty 3) gain enough signatures to support a political initiative.||Open|
|South Deering||15||Changeling||Toxins (Science)||Hardy, Sympathetic, Patient||Once a month, with a successful social roll (difficulty 2), find a connection as per the Fixer merit.||Open|
|South Lawndale||15||Vampire||Retail Therapy (Socialize)||Virtuous, Taste, Common Sense||Once a month, spend a Resource point to use Marshall Square Theater privately for a day and gain +2 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|South Shore||20||Changeling||Civil Law (Academics)||Virtuous, Inspiring, Area of Expertise (Any)||Once a month, spend a Resources point to reserve the South Shore Cultural Center for a private event and gain +2 to social rolls while there.||Open|
|Uptown||20||Mage||Sale Pitches (Persuasion)||Direction Sense, Meditative Mind, Trained Observer||Once per month, find someone that can get you what you need as per the Fixer merit.||Open|
|Washington Heights||20||Mage||Accounting (Academics)||Holistic Awareness, Virtuous, Meditative Mind||Once a month, succeed on a social roll to eliminate criminal activity in the neighborhood for an evening.||Open|
|Washington Park||20||Changeling||Art History (Academics)||Eye for the Strange, Inspiring, Table Turner||Once per week, spend a Resources point to have a neighborhood youth function as Retainer 2 for one task.||Open|
|West Elsdon||15||Werewolf||Law (Academics)||Multilingual, Virtuous, Closed Book||Once a month, succeed on a social roll to have the West Elsdon Civic Association raise funds for a benefit of your choice.||Open|
|West Englewood||15||Werewolf||Basketball (Athletics)||Scarred, Alternate Identity, Danger Sense||Once per month, succeed on a social roll (difficulty 3) to have someone in the neighborhood stopped by police and searched.||Open|
|West Garfield||15||Vampire||Dealers (Streetwise)||Tolerance for Biology, Quick Draw, Danger Sense||Once a month, spend a point of Resources to procure an unidentified corpse.||Open|
|West Lawn||15||Werewolf||Automobiles (Science)||Multilingual, Automotive Genius, Hobbyist Clique||Once per month, spend a Resources point to get the use of an unregistered car for a day.||Open|
|West Pullman||15||Changeling||Environment (Science)||Hardy, Vice-Ridden, Interdisciplinary Specialty||Once per week, spend a Resources point to have a homeless person function as Staff (Streetwise).||Open|
|West Ridge||15||Mage||Religious Works (Academics)||Peacemaker, Safe Place, Support Network||Once per month, spend a point of resources to get a +3 bonus to research efforts related to the local religious groups.||Open|
|West Town||20||Vampire||Festivals (Socialize)||Multilingual, Virtuous, Holistic Awareness||Once per week, succeed in a social roll (difficulty 3) to find someone in the neighborhood with information functioning as Library 1 (Any)||Open|
|Woodlawn||25||Changeling||Research (Academics)||Library (Any), Mentor, Area of Expertise (Any)||Once a month, spend a point of Resources to find an intern to function as Retainer 3 for a day.||Open|
The territory system is an abstraction of constant, repeated, and sustained actions taken to influence and change neighborhoods and the people in them. As such, all merits pertaining to the territory system are those which are available only to mortals as the amount of supernatural activity on the scale the territory system requires would draw too much attention. Again, the system is just an abstraction. Individual uses of supernatural merits are still handled on an individual basis.
Below is a list of applicable merits that are counted towards a cadre's clout. The merits not counted are stricken in the list, but shown for clarity.
Area of Expertise
Eye for the Strange
Good Time Management
Tolerance for Biology
Fleet of Foot
Seizing the Edge
Sleight of Hand
Mystery Cult Initiation
Small Unit Tactics
Takes One to Know One
Air of Menace
Body as Weapon