BPs aren’t money. They aren’t even exactly material resources. They include money, and material goods, and livestock, and lumber and seed and wheat and plows and wagons, and all the rest. But they also include people. They also include political capital, goodwill, advertising with town criers and recruiters going around and spreading the good name of your kingdom and encouraging people to resettle in your land and bring with them their skills and businesses. They include everything that can be considered a useful resource that exists in your kingdom. BPs are the combined wealth and capital, both tangible and intangible, of everyone in the kingdom. When you spend BPs, you aren’t spending your resources. You are influencing your citizens (including new citizens you are constantly drawing into your kingdom) to spend their resources.
This includes the businesses that NPCs create for themselves. The PCs don’t “control” those businesses in a literal in-game sense. They don’t buy or sell or control inventory or any other kind of micro-managing tasks. Instead, the expenditure of BP to build, say, a shop, represents dedicating the resources to recruit shopkeepers from elsewhere, to resettle and build their businesses within your kingdom, to transport their goods within your kingdom. The citizens of your kingdom and their lives and livelihoods and homes and farms and city buildings are both the outcome of BPs, and also the means by which BPs exist. They are the resource you are spending.
BPs are an abstract means of assigning a value to what the PCs control in a game-mechanical sense. Your kingdom encompasses a certain amount of material and immaterial wealth, the vast majority of which is in the form of stuff that your PC’s don’t actually own. But, while they don’t own it, they as the rulers of this new land, as long as they maintain the goodwill of the people, do get to control it – not on a micromanagement level, but they get to decide, in broad brushstrokes, what the citizenry of the kingdom will do, and where, and when. Found a city, build roads from here to there, plant farms, expand commerce and business opportunities.
Alignment: A kingdom’s alignment affects its statistics, so choose your kingdom’s alignment carefully. Lawful kingdoms gain a +2 bonus on Economy checks. Chaotic kingdoms gain a +2 bonus on Loyalty checks. Good kingdoms gain a +2 bonus on Loyalty checks. Evil kingdoms gain a +2 bonus on Economy checks. Neutral kingdoms gain a +2 bonus on Stability checks (a truly neutral kingdom gains this bonus twice).
Size: Count the number of hexes your kingdom comprises and record that number here. This number affects a kingdom’s Consumption and its Command DC. Initially, your kingdom starts at 0.
Command DC: A kingdom’s Command DC is 20 + its size; this value is the DC you’ll be rolling against most often with your kingdom’s Stability, Economy, and Loyalty checks.
Population: Actual population numbers do not factor into your kingdom’s statistics, but it can be fun to track the number anyway. A kingdom’s population is equal to its size x 250 + the total population of each of its cities.
Stability, Economy, and Loyalty: These three values are analogous to saving throws. You make Stability checks during a kingdom’s Upkeep phase to determine whether it remains secure. You make Economy checks during a kingdom’s Income phase to determine how much its treasury increases. You make Loyalty checks to keep the public peace. A kingdom’s initial scores in all three of these categories is 0 + the kingdom’s alignment modifiers. A natural 1 is always a failure for these checks, and a natural 20 is always a success.
Unrest: A kingdom’s Unrest value indicates how rebellious its people are. A kingdom’s Unrest score is applied as a penalty on all Stability, Economy, and Loyalty checks. If a kingdom’s Unrest is above 10, it begins to lose control of hexes it has claimed. If a kingdom’s Unrest score ever reaches 20, it falls into anarchy. While in anarchy, a kingdom can take no action and treats all Stability, Economy, and Loyalty check results as 0. Restoring order once a kingdom falls into anarchy typically requires a number of quests and lengthy adventures by the kingdom’s would-be leaders—if your PCs’ kingdom falls into anarchy, you can either assume the Kingmaker Adventure Path is over (as you might if all of the PCs were slain in an encounter), or you can simply let the PCs “restart” a new kingdom elsewhere in the Stolen Lands. Unrest can never go below 0—adjustments that would normally reduce Unrest lower than 0 are wasted.
Consumption: A kingdom’s prosperity is measured by the Build Points (abbreviated BP) in its treasury, and its Consumption indicates how many BP it costs to keep the kingdom functioning. If a kingdom is unable to pay its Consumption, its Unrest increases by 2. A kingdom’s Consumption is equal to its size plus the number of city districts it contains plus adjustments for Edicts minus 2 per farmland.
Treasury: As your kingdom earns money, favors, resources, and power, its Build Point total increases. In the Kingmaker Adventure Path, you begin with 50 BP in your kingdom’s treasury (this amount is bestowed upon you by the swordlords of Restov).
Special Resources: If your kingdom includes any special resources (see below), record them here.
Leadership: Write in the names of the PCs or NPCs filling each of the 11 leadership roles here, along with their appropriate modifiers.
Bridge: A bridge hex negates the cost increase of building a road that crosses a river.
Building: If you establish a city in a hex at a building location, you can incorporate the building into the city as a free building—the encounter indicates what type of building it counts as. See the cities page for a list of building types.
Cave: Caves can be used as defensive fallback points, storage, or even guard posts or prisons. A cave hex increases a kingdom’s Stability by 1.
Landmarks: Landmarks are sites of great pride, mystery, and wonder. They serve well to bolster a kingdom’s morale. A landmark hex increases a kingdom’s Loyalty by 1.
Rivers: Much like roads, rivers can be used for commerce. For every 4 hexes of navigable rivers your kingdom controls that contain navigable rivers, you gain +1 Economy. (Yes, hexes with a river and a road count for both.)
Road: A hex with a road in it allows for much easier travel. For every four road hexes your kingdom controls, the kingdom’s Economy increases by 1. For every eight road hexes your kingdom controls, its Stability increases by 1.
Ruins: A ruin can be incorporated into a city as a building—doing so halves the cost of the building, as the ruin only needs to be repaired rather than having to be built from the ground up. The GM can tell you what type of building a repaired ruin counts as. See the cities page for a list of building types.
Towns: A town consists of an established settlement— claiming a town hex is an excellent way to add a fully functional city to a kingdom. In order to claim a town hex peacefully, the annexing kingdom must make a Stability check (DC = Command DC). Failure indicates that radicals and upstarts in the town increase your kingdom’s Unrest score by 2d4.
Resources: Resources include particularly valuable sources of lumber, metal, gems, food, or the like. A resource hex increases a kingdom’s Economy by 1.