Lords51: Reading the Newsfax

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Typically a Newsfax chronicles the results of all the turn’s orders submitted to the Game Master. In Lords 51 its critical to understand that the Newsfax is modified to display only that information you can glean from your neighbors, trade partners and certain specialists. Rumors may persist of nearly every nation, but extensive reported knowledge will not. In essence a "Fog of War" effect is created.

The Newsfax still gives a player insight into the activity of other players, the size of their armies, their economic activity and their strategies. Likewise, it allows those same other players an opportunity to view what you may be doing, as well. It does follow the standard format so many of the items will be similar.

My Lords

What is My Lords you ask? It is the reporting method for Newsfax, Map, and Archived data for your position.

My Lords was designed by Rob Hanson initially to be an Encyclopedia for other campaigns and was used as such for a bit. Then it developed into something more than that which he dubbed "My Lords" because the information on it is specific per position. A player logs into their My Lords site with a username and passcode. The following list describes some information found on the banner or within the site.

  • Rank: Displayed MSI Ranking within the Geographic Zone
  • MSI: Military Strength Index is a reflection of your Leaders abilities, any Fortification and Fortresses your kingdom may have and includes all forces under your command. This ranking may be off by a bit due to someone using Intel, Magic, or poor intelligence.
  • NRR: This is the same thing as ESI, but has been built into the program already with the graphs and such. The lower your ranking, the better.
  • Maps: Current map which you see. Some nations may be known about, but not seen on your newsfax information as they are too far away or trade has not yet been opened with them. Explored areas are shown as well as cities, GPv, and Race. (Expect that as an updated map) Additional images relating to your position are also shown here.


Displayed across each nations screen regardless of what they are playing. New Rules changes, clarifications, Campaign policies, etc.

Game Master Name And Address

This is the person and address that all orders should be delivered to on or before the due date. Please note that any orders received by the GM after the Due Date shall be run or not run at the GM’s discretion.

Turn Pricing

Typically found in a newsletter, the fee required by the GM for each turns play. No amount of funds is sufficient in my opinion to cover the actual time spent completing a turn and creating the campaign setting. A figure of 1 hour per position has been thrown around many times in my experience with LOTE. This is optimistic with an excellent GM who has blocks of time available. Instead of becoming a part time accountant however 51 has chosen to go a new direction here. It is a Donation Based System.

Payment is not required to play in the Lords 51 campaign. The players can choose to send in funds based on the quality of the campaign and their own available funding. If you feel you have gotten something extra from the campaign then by all means please send something in.

Note, as a player however there is an attention expectation. Should two sets of orders fail to come in, the position will likely be filled by another player. Due to the nature of this arrangment periodically on the Lords 51 Mailing List a particular piece of software or service may be brought up that requires some help in funding.

Nation by Nation Reports

Each nation is represented by an entry with the following general sections:

  • The name of the nation (in bold capitals).
  • The next line is the name of the current monarch of the nation and their various titles in italics - which may be both longwinded and pretentious.
  • The third line is the Diplomacy line. Here, the results of any diplomacy conducted by that nation’s Leaders is reported, assuming that there were any results at all. The results are noted by the name of the region in which diplomacy took place, followed by the new Control Status that resulted (in parentheses).
The Ming Empire Ming-ta Juwen Shui-jen, Emperor of China, Son of Heaven

Diplomacy: Hupei(f), Tsingdao(t)

This result would indicate that the region of Hupei had become friendly to the diplomacizing nation, and Tsingdao had become tributary. See Diplomacy and Secret Diplomacy for more information on doing diplomacy, and Control Level for the control statuses that a region can have.

The fourth and subsequent lines are the results of your other actions, written up by the game-master in a grand and glorious (i.e. pulpy) style designed also to be self-explanatory.

In each nation by nation report, the highlights of the turn's events are reported. Here are some of the events that are always reported in the Newsfax (unless, of course, they are concealed by Intel activities or some other means):

  • The Foundation of New Cities, where they are, their name and what sea zone it may face
  • Construction of Fortresses
  • New Megalithic Constructions
  • Changes in Regional Terrain
  • The Death of Kings and often other Leaders
  • Rebellions and Civil War
  • Hostile Military Actions against Other Nations
  • The Development of New Technologies
  • Intel Actions against your Nation and the results
  • Failed Intel actions that you attempted against other nations and were ‘blown’ or revealed to the public.

Note - In Campaign 51 UnderWorld activities are nearly always kept in the "dark" so to speak.

Mercenary and Specialist Pools

(Feb 07, this will require a My Lords modification on my part. I will look to figure out a way to do this the best I can. IF I cannot figure it out in My Lords a seperate document may be generated that will be posted on the website.)

In many areas of the world, mercenaries (or condotierri) are available. Mercenaries are bands of folks, of various levels of skill, who pledge allegiance to none other than precious gold. They can be hired, but players are restricted to hiring mercenaries only from those general regions where they control territory. Each Regional Heading in the Newsfax will list the mercenary troops and specialists, that are available for hire in that general region. The Quality Ratings of the troops may or may not be disclosed, at the discretion of the GM. If Leaders are listed, they will be shown along with their military, diplomatic and charisma ratings.

Mercenaries are hired on a one-turn basis at any time during the turn. The pools of available condottieri are listed for each world region they are in. These are the mercenaries available in cities controlled by the nations that are listed under each regional heading (such as North Africa, China or South America). The type and number of mercenaries are listed. Their QRs may or may not be revealed.

The minimum bid per unit for a mercenary unit is 0.5 GP. If a Mercenary Captain is available, then his minimum bid is his combined Combat and Diplomacy stats in GP.

There are more details on hiring and using Mercenary troops.

MSI Rankings List

A My Lords link will lead to the MSI Rankings List. Each nation is listed, in descending order, from the most powerful to the weakest. Following each nation’s name are that nation’s: actual MSI rating, ESI ranking, and International Trade Value.

LOTE Symbol Small.JPG

Campaign: 51 Siri - Age of Awakenings
Alternative Campaign Setting

Lords of the Earth 5th Edition, version 5.5 © 1997 Thomas Harlan (Original)
© 2005 JJ Martell (Modified for Lords51)

All rights reserved. Permission was given to modify the content for Lords51. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
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