Winter is Coming!

Winter was the season to fear in medieval days.  For good reason.

Winter in Feudums can be as brutal as it was in real life. Luckily, the game is not completely all cold and frozen misery. The Feudums time cycle mirrors real seasonal change. There are the usual four seasons and each has a different effect on the game. Summer flows into autumn, which turns into winter, winter thaws into spring and spring heats up into summer before starting the cycle again.The game further subdivides each season into early, mid, and late because each time frame can have a specific effect - especially on medieval agriculture.Season Icon Spring

For example, you will spend “early” spring sowing your spring crops and dealing with new livestock babies. “Mid” spring finds your serfs weeding the winter crop and gathering livestock dairy products. During “late” spring, you’ll need to worry about dairy products.

Food, as you might expect, plays a huge role in the development – and happiness – of your population and your feudum. People must always have enough to eat, else there are negative consequences both to your population (as people starve) and also to morale (as survivors looks for someone to blame!)

Seasonal and Year-round labours can be tweaked
There are plenty of seasonal and year-round labours to set, but your feudum can also take care of them by default.

There are spring and winter crops to help keep your population fed year round although everything slows way down for the cold winter months. The winter crop is harvested in late summer while the crops planted in early spring are reaped in early autumn. During the long winter months, with the exception of some livestock being slaughtered, a feudum’s population must live off its stores.

Season Icon Summer

Each feudum is expected to be self sufficient to an extent. Surpluses are sent into the player’s treasury which serves as a virtual warehouse for all resources including food. The player’s treasury will help offset any shortages one area may be having. Diplomacy is always an option too. Perhaps a fellow Lord could spare some resources? Or will he sense weakness and attack?

Heading into winter, a Lord or Lady must be sure that the level of food is great enough to supply a population over the winter. Unfortunately, food can also spoil, so there is a fine line between how much you can store vs. how much is used.

As in medieval days, most activity grinds to a halt during the winter. Armies move much slower. Military units in the field can double the cost of their upkeep. Battles take more time and automatically have a lot more causalities. Winter is a brutal time.

Tile Improvements can unlock new Labourer slots
Terrains or Improvements unlocks new Labourer slots for the local population

Gathering food for survival is still the number one task for your feudum’s serfs to do. There are both spring and winter crops that must be sown, weeded, and harvested. Serfs can also tend livestock to generate additional stores of food – dairy and meat products.  The game allows you to be as involved as you want to be with the economy of your feudum.  If you want, you can determine what each person living in your feudum does each turn or you can allow the AI do it (which is the default setting).  There are multiple jobs available within a feudum - from farmer to blacksmith to healer.  How you (or the AI) distributes the laborours will determine how effective your economy is.  But always be ready for winter!

Season WinterThe game is completely moddable so specific games may have different aspects - including for the seasons. This means someone could change the internal working of the seasons for a specific game world. For example, you could change the seasons to a perpetual ice age where the farming "season" is only in “early” winter (just a few ticks in a year) or create a Game of Thrones Westeros setting with very long summers and short, brutal winters. The ideas are endless.