It seems like 1/2 the players like this sort of style graphics, at least as for having it as a change from all the other maps that all look like maps on paper... So it's ok, if your not partial to this style, for one can not please everyone...
Yes, this game is a little more complex then the standard ones that seem to keep making the strong - stronger and the weak - weaker... Here, it's sort of vise versa - for it is to help establish a balance battle for the throne.
Churches do give a negative deploy - the reasons for this is that they are the gateway to the throne. I do not wish players to try to stockpile or horde them until they absolutely need to. Then when they do it'll be more of a struggle to hold onto them and the throne.
Yes they do work with the land bonuses - all spaces do, even ships.. So if you have 10 lands and 2 of them are churches - you'll get +2 per area for the lands for a total of 20 units - but then -2 for each church of a total negative of 4, making your over all Bonus only 16 units instead of 20.
I know the Quantity of units seem high, but it will be high evenly across the board - so to illustrate both major blood bath battles, and the randomness of a few good men.
The ships are neutral to start. No they are not auto deploy. What makes them special is their connections to the other ships and harbors. Using them will allow you to travel across the map much faster then trucking through the lands. They also open up a multitude of attack angles onto each other and harbor towns. Because of the ships, London for example has 10 different access points that they can be attacked from.
Ty, for visiting and for hoping the best... I wish you happy gaming...
Oh, though the concept and idea to insure a struggle and blood bath for the throne will remain in this game, aspects on Qty of Bonuses and penalties most likely will change and be tweeked once on the game play stamp - and will dedicate more of my time to that facet.
One Idea that I'm tossing around is to have the first player that set up the game to start as the King of England, and as such have a different victory goal then the other Lords (Players) whom all want to capture his throne. So this way not only are the Lords fighting with each other for the chance to become King, but the King itself will be smarter then a neutral player and will be fighting to keep hold of his throne. Two of the reasons I'm thinking of making this change in the Game play stamp stage is because I read on another thread that players can have different victory conditions, and because the game does not offer neutral auto deploy so neutral players can never get stronger.
I was thinking from the other suggestion about adding:
To the game for their historical rules in this war...
Well, All players in this game should be acting the Rules of all the Lords and Ladies of that time...
So, the player themselves may adopt these personas, for it is the players that are the Lords and Ladies, not an area on the map.