The Roman Tribunal is home to the Primus of Guernicus, Verditious, and Mercere. It is also home to ancient pagan sites of Great power associated with ancient Rome, and more dominion than nearly anywhere else. Due to this the main sources of magical power in the tribunal have been claimed centuries ago, with the tribunal dedicated to bringing in vis through trade. In the past century though new chapter houses and covenants have formed in the kingdom of Sicily and along the trade routes of Venice and Genoa out into the Mediterranean. They were prepared to challenge Thebes for a number of Islands during the 1228 Tribunal and were originally siding with Normandy to open up participation of their colonial mages in teh tribunal, but sensing which way things were going the representatives of Rome represented themselves as long standing victims of the dominion auras and sold out their Norman allies in exchange for recognition of rights to claim parts of Northern Africa which had been denied in the past due to an agreement with Hermetic Sahirs and which had been abandoned in all but name for over a century. Since the agreement with the Hermetic Sahirs and expired in 1225, the motion carried. Younger covenants already exist in places like Malta and smaller islands away from the Itallian mainland, while an order of Holy Mages operate within the church and Rome itself as a holy order in their own right.
The interesting thing to start with, is, of course, the founding of a brand new Spring covenant in Northern Africa. What kind of support would be received from the homeland? Obviously the expectation would be to gather vis for the rest of the Roman Tribunal, so covenants in North Africa would likely be turning their eyes toward gathering as much vis as possible, many by any ( maybe unethical) means. The Mali empire will exist soon, and as it was noted for it's gold production, it could also have huge stocks and sources of vis, a tempting locale for covenants to try to make trade with, or plunder.
I'm in the process of creating a covenant in the Rome tribunal, specifically in the Sahara. Any specific boon / hook rules? Build points for a basically fresh Spring Covenant?
I still haven't done a complete breakdown for the Roman tribunal at this point, but for a spring covenant outside of the Itallian peninsula I would have 300 build points that may be spent on vis sources or anything that can be purchased with gold, 25 point limit on specialists, and serious restrictions on income sources but anything purchased with vis must instead be purchased with vis debt which will be repaid in saga with a yearly interest equal to 1 pawn of vis for every five or fraction thereof borrowed per year.
Alright, I've posted a first draft of the covenant on the wiki. It's "Covenant of Fall's Hope", you can also find it under the Rome section.
Books on arts and magic items cannot be purchased with gold, so they do not count in terms of build point cost- instead the cost in vis should be calculated and used for the debt this covenant will owe.
I had not considered the use of the indebted flaw when I did my rough outline of how to create the covenant. Hold off on the changes above, I am deliberating now between 2 methods of creating such covenants- one requiring the indebted flaw and having rules to allow the purchase of vis type items, or what I had originally proposed which was to make the covenant as if it has no vis type assets and then add a balanced debt and assets for those items... I'm going to calculate the alternative accounting on your covenant as part of the process...
I have reviewed the covenant, and I am going to stick with my original methodology- the equipment you have specified for this covenant spends 70 points on equipment which requires vis to purchase, so you would have those 70 points left to spend. The equipment you are getting that costs vis is worth 36 pawns of vis, with the caveat that this could buy you a lot more lab texts without raising the cost (for the Roman tribunal I would assume 180 levels of lab texts per pawn of vis). 36 pawns of vis would mean an interest rate of 8 pawns per year. If you are also indebted from another reason, this still may be taken as a flaw, but does not change the accounting of vis in build points.
Major indebtedness should have roughly 25% of income as interest. even if we assume that the hidden resources is to be included as vis sources exclusively, this would still put the covenant vis income at 90 pawns per year, 1/4 of this would be 23 pawns per year, not 30, with a total debt of 115 pawns of vis. Obviously if you keep this hook it will add to the 8 pawns of vis per year owed for covenant resources, bringing you to 31 pawns of vis per year interest on a total debt of 151 pawns debt.
You still need to decide a source of income for this covenant- assuming it remains a single magus covenant it has a 25 pounds/year income with a current calculated net 11 3/4 pounds per year in profit with the purchased specialists and 3 laborers. It also has no guardsmen, but this may not be an issue given it's size and location.
I was thinking of the Major Debt Hook as a major fine slapped on Fatuus as part of sentencing.
A total of 6 queens at 3 rooks per year = 20 years of indebtedness, which I feel is probably appropriate for a major hook. I think this "debt" would be interest free, given that it's not really a loan. I based the 3 rooks off of the figure given in Covenants, stating that it should take up 3/4 of covenant income.
In regards to the 36 pawns of vis debt that you state, I'm happy to take that on, and will figure out a couple more lab texts and specialists to add to the roster.
Mundane income source is probably growing what can be grown from the oasis (dates palms, fruit trees, barley and millet) and trading with travelers from the south who stop for water on the way to the coast.
the 3/4 is correct (I was looking at the minor hook) but it also specifies that this is the interest in the description, which may mean the fine had to be paid immediately and you took out a vis loan to pay for it. At three rooks interest it would however be a 15 rook loan, not 6 queens, but again the debt is, by definition of the flaw, the interest, so repayment comes out of what is left after you pay the 38 pawns a year in debts.
The good news is you still have 70 points to spend on more mundane resources, such as lab equipment or philosophae texts.