You've all fools and briar-brains! This is another sop to them bloody mummers in the mountains, or I'm no brewer. It's folly to pass this thing. Them that pay the piper will call the tune.

Walter Brewer, Senator for Upwold

Overview

Because of the great costs involved in creating a structure using mithril, weirwood, or white granite, most commissions are built to provide important practical benefits. A folly is the general term for any commission that is explicitly designed not to provide any apparent benefits.

Most follies are straightforward endeavours, statues created to celebrate some great accomplishments of a nation, or more cynically the reputation of one of it's senators. They are ideal to create suitable monuments to memorialise those who have died in battle.

Senate Commissions

The Imperial Senate may pass a motion of commission for the construction of a folly. The senate must select a territory, and a region within that territory, where the folly will be constructed.

Since the construction of a folly does not provide any tangible benefits, no Imperial title is created to oversee it. It is possible for a senator to create a title to oversee the folly, creating a custodian for the folly.

Scrutiny

Follies are often privately funded, the senator seeks only the permission of the Senate to create the folly, rather than direct support and funding. At times follies have faced a rough ride through the Senate, with parsimonious senators accusing political rivals of squandering precious resources that might otherwise be devoted to a war effort. Privately funding a motion, lets the senator cite the virtue of prosperity in defence of their motion. On occasions funding from the Senate has been required to complete the folly, leading to appeals to the need to showcase the pride of the nation, territory or region where the folly is sited.

Other than cost, the main reason that a folly might receive close scrutiny is the possibility that it could be used by a non-Imperial power. Such uses can provide Imperial citizens with valuable benefits, but the Senate and the Synod have both taken a dim view of such interference in Imperial affairs on occasion. Historically many senators have chosen to be public about the true intent of a folly, but some have preferred to ask for forgiveness rather than permission.

In theory any commission could be manipulated or taken-over by a non-Imperial power, but follies are the most susceptible because they do not have a pre-existing function or purpose.

Benefits

Grandeur

Upon completion of a folly, we will update the wiki entry for that region to include a description of the folly, with a length appropriate to the size and scale of the construction. The senator responsible for bringing the motion is welcome to email us with what they would like to build so that we can use that information to create the wiki entry.

Tangible Benefits

A folly does not provide any direct tangible benefits as a result of its construction, nor is it possible for the Empire to adapt the folly to provide any benefits without rebuilding it.

Potential Benefits

It is never possible for a folly to provide any tangible benefits while under Imperial control. (If it were possible, then the commission would not be a folly).

Once a folly is complete it may provide some benefits if control of the folly is ceded to a non-Imperial power. For example if the Senate approved the construction of a temple to the Asavean god of the sea, then the folly might provide some benefits if the Asaveans were given control of the folly.

In these circumstances, the non-Imperial power may appoint a being, who may or may not be an Imperial citizen, to be responsible for their operation of the folly. Such a position is not an Imperial title, as the power of appointment is vested in another body and cannot be directly controlled by the legal authority of the Empire. An Imperial citizen may hold any number of foreign titles, even if they already hold an Imperial title.

Control of a folly may be specified in the Senate motion, or it may be granted by a vote, judgement or declaration of the relevant political house. It is possible for a non-Imperial powers to attempt to seize control of a folly without the permission or possibly knowledge of the Empire.

If the Empire is not content with the way a non-Imperial power is employing a folly, then it may pass an appropriately worded Senate motion to instruct the magistrates to eject them. If passed, this motion will restore the folly to its original inert state. If the Senate chooses, they may order the destruction of any commission that is in a region controlled by the Empire. The costs to destroy a commission are dependent on the size and scale of the construction.

Costs

  • Time: 3 months to construct per 50 wains of materials used
  • Labour: 2 crowns per wain
  • Upkeep: None

A folly requires at least one wain of either white granite, weirwood or mithril. There is no upper limit on the number of wains that may be used to construct a folly, the more material expended, the more impressive the resulting folly will be.

Most follies do not have any noticeable upkeep. However it is possible for a folly to be damaged, usually by saboteurs or attacking forces, in which case it may require further bourse materials or money to restore its grandeur or prevent its complete collapse.

Current Follies

This list shows all follies constructed by the Empire in recent times that are still standing. It was last updated following the Autumn Equinox 383YE.

Former Follies

These follies are no longer active. This happens automatically if a folly is decommissioned by the Imperial Senate but follies may be destroyed or become inactive for many different reasons.

Game Design

Follies exist so that players can create a proper memorial to the dead, or create similar structures that celebrate national pride or other achievements. You cannot build a folly and then have the folly provide some direct tangible benefit - by definition that is not a folly. Anything that provides a benefit while under Imperial control is a sinecure, ministry, or similar and must follow those rules in their entirety.

If a player has made an arrangement with a non-Imperial power that they can build a folly that will provide direct benefits if control is granted to or usurped by that power. It is an exceptionally bad idea to build a folly in the vain hope that it will naturally appeal to another power to take it over - that is a recipe for disappointment. Any character seeking to go down this path is strongly advised to make their agreements with the foreign power before embarking on the construction of a folly.