Tributes are collected throughout the Avalon year from towns and villages part of a city's sphere of influence, providing said town or village has been occupied or conquered - by the raising of the standard - details about which can be found in HELP SPHERE and HELP INFLUENCE. Tribute cannot exceed what is available so a village with nothing to offer will provide poor tribute while a rich town has the potential to offer much.
Here is how TRIBUTE works:
1. Each New Year's Day (1st of Midwinter) a census is taken by your occupying legions to decide the "tribute potential" i. E. how much gold and resources an occupied territory has for taxation in tribute. This census is critical because though it may be possible to levy a little tribute from a rich village without legions on the ground, the gain will be far from potential. More legions in key locations of occupied village or town means more pressure applied and thus census gets closer to the real gold and resources available.
Once the potential has been determined, each year during the months of Eleuthral, Springflower, Midsummer and Leaflost (one month per season), the villages and occupied territories issue the tributes.
2. Each season the locations of the occupied territory will be examines for tribute. Legions will collect accordingly. How much they collect will be based on the census from New Year's Day and the numbers you have left on the ground to exact this compulsory taxation. More legions in key locations of occupied towns and villages means a higher percentage of census "tribute potential" gets collected.
3. Each season the tribute collecting legions will also impress local villagers and thus increase markedly the number of enlistable men roaming around keen to join the occupation/flag-raised city. The size of the occupying forces on the ground in the towns and villages will have a strong effect increasing the number of enlistables. Collecting the men is down to the city: enlisting duties, gauntlet culling (see HELP GAUNTLET) or various mass enlistment methods once the enlistable men have been "out" for over an Avalon month.
4. Tribute should be brought back home as safely and quickly as possible by the citizens charged with the task of its collection. These legions are vulnerable to foreign attack, to thieves pilfering, to being engaged by enemy forces, etc. Commodities will automatically be placed into the collecting legion's inventory, gold will be taken immediately to the city treasury, and it is then up to the city to get the goods back home. Enlistables attracted by the occupying legions and hoping to join the conquering military will gather around the legion. Again it is up to the city to safely conduct them to home barracks and enlist the recruits for training.
Syntax: TRIBUTE CENSUS or TRIBUTE <Avalon year>.
The census "tribute potential" is logged on New Years Day and you can look it over by typing TRIBUTE CENSUS to get an overview. To review tribute potential in detail, location by location across your occupied territory, type TRIBUTE followed by the Avalon year (and you can look at prior year's census specifics by selecting those previous years). The CENSUS will deplete gradually as the year progresses and the potential is converted into actual gains.
Syntax: TRIBUTE OVERVIEW.
Use this command to give you a concise list of all occupied territory divided into the towns and villages of your sphere along with how many key locations and secondary locations each have, then a summary of the legions present in the key locations that define tribute census and subsequent collection.
Syntax: ENLISTED/BRIBED/IMPRESSED [<Avalon year>].
Shows you the current rankings of players involved in bribery, enlistment and gauntlet conscription and the number of enlistables brought into the fold. The better organised a city or guild, the more it will gather of its own tribute enlistables (free of charge) and the better it will use its money for bribing foreigners (more costly as more are bribed) and the more productive will be its gauntlet culling impressing potential enlistment, tribute gold and commodities away from occupation city and into your own coffers.
Syntax: SOIACTIONS [<day of the month>].
This command allows you to look over the logs of all tribute related activity including: census info,sphere of influence taxation gains, enlistments, briberies, impressed loss, expenses for tribute collection, extent of legions in place for tribute collection and individual citizen efforts across the Avalon year to gather in what is due and what is 'available' to be collected.
It is useful to think of tribute like an arms race: it is a small affair by default with an occupied sphere giving a little gold and access to commodity markets and a trickle of villagers for enlistment. But then when large legions are put in key locations on tribute territory, in the towns and villages, tribute is squeezed and taxation revenues increase hugely while exponentially more villagers are coerced into becoming potential enlistables. These higher numbers create a pressing need to gather and enlist, to grows one's military and ensure foreign armies don't get ahead. Enlistment becomes a competition because your tribute enlistables represent potential for rival cities too - so long as they invest enough gold.
At times high tribute and seasonable enlistment spawning create violent and expensive rivalries as cities and guilds jockey over bribery, beckoning villagers to barracks, safely gathering the manpower of their growing armies. REMEMBER: it may be the occupying powers deciding tribute size but all cities, all guilds compete for its acquisition.
See HELP CALENDAR for when the tribute collections are most active and when to expect enlistables to spawn.