Paul & Dan chat about bases for player characters in D&D — strongholds, ships, taverns, houses, and more!
European-style castles originated in the 9th and 10th centuries, after the fall of the Carolingian Empire resulted in its territory being divided among individual lords and princes. These nobles built castles to control the area immediately surrounding them and the castles were both offensive and defensive structures; they provided a base from which raids could be launched as well as offered protection from enemies. Although their military origins are often emphasized in castle studies, the structures also served as centers of administration and symbols of power. Urban castles were used to control the local populace and important travel routes, and rural castles were often situated near features that were integral to life in the community, such as mills, fertile land, or a water source.
Due to the lord’s presence in a castle, it was a center of administration from where he controlled his lands. He relied on the support of those below him, as without the support of his more powerful tenants a lord could expect his power to be undermined. Successful lords regularly held court with those immediately below them on the social scale, but absentees could expect to find their influence weakened. Larger lordships could be vast, and it would be impractical for a lord to visit all his properties regularly, so deputies were appointed. This especially applied to royalty, who sometimes owned land in different countries.
Wandering DMs Paul Siegel and Dan “Delta” Collins host thoughtful discussions on D&D and other TTRPGs every week. Comparing the pros and cons of every edition from the 1974 Original D&D little brown books to cutting-edge releases for 5E D&D today, we broadcast live on YouTube and Twitch so we can take viewer questions and comments on the topic of the day. Live every Sunday at 1 PM Eastern time.
This description uses material from the Wikipedia article “Castle“, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.