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Imperator: Rome tutorial #6 - Governments.

The government of a state defines many of its possibilities and regulates how its internal politics work. The player plays as the state, and can therefore change the government of it. Please consult List of all states in Imperator: Rome for an overview in tabular form.


Republican Governments

Unless specified otherwise, all Republics have the following characteristics:

  • National Civilization Value: +35%
  • Each ruler must be at least 35 to be elected.
  • Each ruler reigns for 5 years.
  • Each ruler can be re-elected every 10 years.
Republic Type Idea Slots Government Bonus Description
Aristocratic 2 Military, 1 Oratory Has Co-Ruler, Monthly Loyalty: +0.02, National Freeman Happiness: +10% Whilst outwardly democratic, an Aristocratic Republic limits leadership to those who enjoy high status.
Democratic 1 Military, 1 Civic, 1 Oratory National Civilization Value: +30%, Minimum Election Age 25, National Freeman Happiness: +10% This system of government gives all eligible citizens a voice, through the election of representatives to a senate, or council.
Oligarchic 1 Civic, 2 Oratory Minimum Election Age 40, Monthly Wages: -10%, National Citizen Happiness: +15% An Oligarchic Republic restricts positions of power to a wealthy or powerful minority.
Plutocratic 2 Civil, 1 Religious Capital Import Routes: +1 , National Commerce Income: +10% Primarily concerned with the acquisition of wealth, Plutocratic Republics can be found ruling many of the coastal City States throughout the world.
Theocratic 1 Oratory, 2 Religious Omen Power: +15%, State Religion Happiness: +10% The priesthood will enshrine democracy into the very tenets of our faith!
Dictatorship 1 Military, 1 Civic, 1 Oratory, 1 Religious Ruler rules for life, gets benefits from consort, Monthly Tyranny: +0.04, National Freeman Happiness: +10%, National Citizen Output: +15% A form of totalitarian government, a dictatorship places political power in the hands of a single individual.

The Senate

Main article: Politics

The Senate consists of 100 seats with each seat belonging to one of five factions. Each faction has a leader, generally the most prominent character that supports that faction, which influences the support gained for a faction. The amount of support generated by the faction leader is based on the attribute applicable to the faction (the leader's martial rating of the military faction will influence the support generated). The amount of seats each faction has changes over time based on the support each faction leader is generating.

Depending on which faction the ruler of the republic belongs to, the republic gets various bonuses or maluses. The amount of seats in the Senate changes over time, depending on different factors, with the charisma of the faction leader always impacting the attraction of the seats. If a nation wishes to instantly strengthen a faction's position in the Senate, it can spend 5 stability to convince 10 seats to join that faction. Doing so, however, results in an increase of tyranny.

Senatorial Factions

Faction Modifiers
Party civic.png Civic
  • National tax +20% Tax income
Party mercantile.png Mercantile
  • Diplomatic reputation.png +2 Diplomatic reputation
  • Commerce value.png +10% National commerce income
Party military.png Military
  • Morale of armies +10% Morale of armies
  • +10% Morale of navies
Party populist.png Populist Political influence.png -33% Monthly Political Influence
Party religious.png Religious
  • Omen.png+10% Omen power


There are three different categories of actions which require senate approval:

  • All changing of laws require approval by the senate
  • A lot of character interactions, like banishing, imprisoning, etc.
  • All diplomatic interactions with other nations.

The senate can block an action if fewer than 40 senators support it. If fewer than 60 senators back the action, it can be forced through, but it will increase the amount of tyranny. If the Senate approves an action or not depends on its composition, and what the nation's course is. When an action is passed, it impacts the characters of the nation. Loyalty is lost or gained depending on faction membership, and factions gain and lose senators.


Main article: Politics#Offices

Unless specified otherwise, all the modifiers value are multiplied by the Attribute of the office's holder.

Office Attribute Modifiers Description
Censor Oratory power.png Senate Influence: +0.1 This office is the republic's chief magistrate with responsibility over the state census, public morality, and clearing blockages in the senate and courts.
Magistrate Oratory power.png Aggressive Expansion Change: -0.01 This office manages the republic's economy and the conduct of foreign and domestic trade, ensuring the smooth flow of currency and goods.
Tribune of the Soldiers Military power.png Discipline: +0.5% This office oversees the quality of the republic's military by managing their training, logistics, and discipline.
Tribune of the Treasury Military power.png Tax Income: +1% This office is in charge of administering the republic's treasury by ensuring the collection of taxes and the payment of military pensions.
Augur Religious power.png Omen Power: +2% This office is a senior priest and the republic's chief interpreter of the will of the gods through haruspicy and augury.
High Priest Religious power.png Sacrifice to the Gods Cost: -2% This office is the chief high priest of the republic, responsible for overseeing the priesthood, conducting state sacrifices, and religious festivals.
Tribune of the People Civic power.png Freemen Happiness: +0.5% This office represents the republic's freemen with the authority to check the power of the senate and intervene on behalf of freemen in the courts.
Physician Civic power.png Health: +0.5% This office is the most senior doctor of the republic and is responsible for the care of senior politicians and their families.


In a monarchy authority lies with the ruler, or Monarch. The monarch has as close to absolute authority as any ruler can get in Imperator: Rome. Unlike in a Republic, a Monarch ruler sits for life and is able to change laws, interact with foreign countries and use whatever character interactions they wish without approval of a senate.

Monarchy Governments

Unless specified otherwise, all Monarchies have the following characteristics:

Monarchy Type Idea Slots Government Bonus Description
Autocratic Monarchy 1 Military, 1 Civic, 1 Religious National Civilization Value: +30%, National Slave Output: +10% Conferring absolute power, the title of an Autocratic Monarchy is hereditary.
Aristocratic Monarchy 1 Military, 2 Oratory Monthly Tyranny: -0.1, National Citizen Happiness: +10%, Desired Freemen Ratio in Cities: +10% Although ruled by a hereditary monarch, power in an Aristocratic Monarchy is often conferred upon members of the nobility.
Stratocratic Monarchy 2 Military, 1 Oratory National Freemen Output: +10%, Monthly Loyalty: +0.02, Desired Freemen Ratio in Cities: +10% The military is integral to a functioning stratocratic monarchy. Advised by generals and warriors, the Monarch rules by might.
Theocratic Monarchy 1 Oratory, 2 Religious Omen Power: +0.15, State Religion Happiness: +10% A king cannot have true power unless backed by the priesthood, and invested with the power of the Divine.
Plutocratic Monarchy 2 Civic, 1 Religious National Commerce Income: +10%, Capital Import Routes: +1 Largely focused on the acquisition of wealth, a plutocratic monarchy represents such nations as desire to avoid sustained conflict
Empire 1 Military, 1 Civic, 1 Oratory, 1 Religious National Civilization Value: +40%, National Freemen Output: +15%, National Slaves Output: +15% An Emperor wields absolute power over the state, and usually holds sovereignty over lesser kings and nobles.
Imperial Cult 1 Military, 1 Civic, 1 Oratory, 1 Religious National Civilization Value: +40%, National Freemen Output: +15%, National Slaves Output: +15%, Omen Power: +15% In some cultures, an Emperor or Empress holds such authority that they are considered to be a messenger of the divine, or even a deity themselves.


While a Monarch has the authority to act without asking for approval their subject characters will still react to their actions if they do not approve of them. Legitimacy is a value between -100 and +100 and models the perceived right for the Monarch to rule their country.

For the monarchies that exist in Imperator: Rome at the start of the game this was highly relevant as they were almost all established in this generation. None of them have a firm number of supporters, and many of them (like Egypt or the Seleucid Empire) have a population that considers them to be foreigners.

Legitimacy directly impacts the loyalty of all characters in the country as well as the happiness of all Freemen.

At 0 Legitimacy all characters in a Monarchy are capped at 50 loyalty (out of the normal 100), and at negative Legitimacy they will suffer a ticking loyalty reduction. Legitimacy also directly impacts the cost of enacting laws.

Legitimacy is gained from acting as a good monarch, most importantly:

  • Ruler Popularity
  • High Stability
  • The Skill of your currently employed Court Philosopher

Legitimacy is reduced by anything that threatens popular support for the monarchy, most importantly:

  • Low Ruler Popularity
  • War Exhaustion
  • Ruler Corruption
  • The number of employed characters that prefer another successor than the current heir to succeed (we will talk more about this below).

To help increase Legitimacy you can also at any time use a government action to Strengthen Legitimacy by 10 for a cost of 25 Civic Power and 5 Tyranny. There are also various indirect ways, like Holding Games, that increase popularity and therefore indirectly Legitimacy.

Succession Laws

In a Monarchy, a new ruler is not elected but will instead inherit power upon the death of the old monarch. The method for this inheritance depends on which of these succession laws the country follows. The family of the current ruler is always preferred over non-family members.

  • Agnatic: Inheritance is in age order, with preference to male children of ruler.
  • Agnatic-Cognatic: Inheritance in age order, children of ruler are preferred without preference in regards to gender.
  • Agnatic Seniority: The male siblings of the Monarch will inherit before any children.
  • Egyptian Succession: Children of ruler are preferred in order of age regardless of gender. Members of the royal family will marry their own family members (including sibling to sibling).


Successions are not always as easy as the described laws would imply. There are many examples of conflicts over who would inherit, sometimes tearing even great and otherwise stable kingdoms apart. In the government view, the 4 most likely characters in the country to inherit will be displayed at all times (including the current heir) together with their loyalty and the strength of their claim (according to the succession law). Every character in a Monarchy also has a Preferred Heir out of these four. Most of the time this will be the current heir, but depending on things like friendships, skills or lack of loyalty, they can prefer one of the other heirs.

Any possible successor apart from the current heir will have a ticking negative modifier to their loyalty and will normally do what they can to assemble money and supporters for the day the current monarch dies. Apart from increasing loyalty and attacking the causes for someone preferring another heir you can ask them to support your preferred heir. As long as their loyalty is at least 50 this drastically increases their support for your current heir for a cost of 2 Tyranny.

Upon succession, the current heir will become the new Monarch with a starting Legitimacy of 60 plus 20 times the religious Unity in the country. It is further reduced by 2 points for each employed character that supported another heir.

Succession Crisis

At the time of succession, if any of the possible successors that did not gain the throne are at less than 33% loyalty, they will make their displeasure known by assembling an army of as many loyal troops as they can afford. As this is a loyal army, and they are disloyal, you will be unable to give orders to this army and unable to detach the pretenders from it. The presence of these armies is likely to drive the country towards a civil war, either immediately or in the long run.

To the end of disarming this threat you have special character interactions on pretenders:

  • Encourage Deserters: Allows you to reduce the pretender army size.
  • Make Mercenary: For a very large sum of gold you can send a pretender off to be a Mercenary, along with their loyal troops. This will eliminate the threat to you internal stability, for now.

Meanwhile foreign countries will have also have a new character interaction available, to spend money and political influence on increasing the size of the Pretender army.


Main article: Politics#Offices

Unless specified otherwise, all the modifiers value are multiplied by the Attribute of the office's holder.

Office Attribute Modifiers Description
Chancellor Oratory power.png Monthly Agressive Expansion: -0.01 This office is the monarch's chief diplomat responsible for the reputation of the ruler and state in foreign courts.
Royal Tutor Oratory power.png Sacrifice to the Gods Cost: -2% This office is the monarch's royal tutor and oversees the education of the children of the ruler and important nobles at court.
Marshal Military power.png Mercenary Maintenance: -1% This office is the marshal in charge of the organization and performance of the monarch's armies including training, logistics and recruitment.
Master of the Guard Military power.png Land Morale: +1% This office is in charge of the monarch's royal bodyguard and oversees their personal protection and maintains domestic order.
High Priest Religious power.png Omen Power: +2% This office is the monarch's high priest and directs religious sacrifices, festivals and the interpretation of the god's will.
Court Philosopher Religious power.png Monthly Legitimacy: +0.01 This office is the monarch's court philosopher who supervises libraries and the gathering and protection of knowledge.
Steward Civic power.png National Tax: +1% This office is the royal steward responsible for administering the collection of taxes and government spending for the monarch.
Physician Civic power.png Health: +0.5% This office is the court physician responsible for the medical treatment and health of the monarch and their subjects.


Migratory Tribes (also known as Tribal Chiefdoms), Settled Tribes (Tribal Kingdoms) and Federated Tribes (Tribal Federations) make up the grand majority of the countries in Imperator. Tribal countries exist in all locations from western Europe, to Arabia and the Caucasus to the interior of India all the way to the Burmese border.

The base premise for the tribal government is that authority is shared. When a ruler dies the new ruler will be elected from among a number of Clan Leaders, all whom command their own Retinues of loyal troops. Changing any Laws at all in a tribe requires that your Clan Leaders are loyal, and doing so will reduce the loyalty of all Clan leaders but the king.

Tribal Governments

Unless specified otherwise, all Tribes have the following characteristics:

  • Centralization
  • Clan Leader Retinues
  • +50% Army Maintenance Cost
  • -20% Wrong Culture Happiness (in addition to the default -10%)
  • -40% Wrong Culture Group Happiness (in addition to the default -30%)
  • +25% Freeman Promotion Cost
  • +50% Citizen Promotion Cost
  • +5% Enslavement Efficiency
  • Enables the 'Raze City' Ability

Tribe Type Idea Slots Base Bonus Government Bonus Description
Migratory Tribe 2 Military Allows Migration, National Tribesmen Happiness: +10% National Tribesmen Output: +15% Elected by a council of tribesmen, a tribal chief rules for life, and is entrusted with the safety and security of his or her tribe. The most important authority vested in the Chief is the decision of when to settle and when to migrate to another, more favorable location.
Settled Tribe 1 Military, 1 Oratory Country Civilization Level: +10% National Tribesmen Happiness: +15% Tribal leaders are elected for life, by a council of the clan leaders. This is a society that has come to settle permanently in its region, embracing a sedentary lifestyle.
Federated Tribe 1 Military, 1 Civic, 1 Oratory Country Civilization Level: +15% National Tribesmen Output: +20%, Pop Promotion Speed: +25% Representing the wisdom of a great number of united clans, the council of a Federated Tribe resembles the beginnings of a democratic state.


All Tribes make use of a Centralization scale that goes from -100 to +100. Centralization will change from your actions such as laws you enact, or your reactions to what clan leaders do. There is however no direct way to change the Centralization value, using power or money for instance, it is only adjusted as a result of your actions and over time. The vast majority of countries are Settled Tribes at start, and some are part of larger tribal identities that can form into bigger Federated Tribes.

The modifiers from Centralization scale linearly. Below table shows examples.

Centralization Level Migration Cost National Tribesman Output Size of Clan Retinue Freeman Promotion Cost Country Civilization Level
-100% -50% +25% +50%
-50% -25% +12.50% +25%
+50% -25% -12.50% +5%
+100% -50% -25% +10%
  • At -25% Centralization, a Settled or Federated Tribe can Abandon Sedentary Lifestyle, thus adopting the Migratory Tribe government form.
  • At +40% Centralization, a Migratory Tribe can Form Tribal Kingdom, thus adopting the Settled Tribe government form.
  • Many Migratory or Settled Tribes have special decisions available to unite their region after conquering it, thus adopting the Federated Tribe government form. Many others don't.
  • A Settled or Federated Tribe may Embrace Autocracy or Democracy to adopt Autocratic Monarchy or Democratic Republic government forms respectively. Among the requirements, capital's City Civilization Level needs to be 50 or higher. This has synergy with positive Centralization.

A higher Civilization value in your cities will make Tribesmen unhappy to live in them (while Citizens and Freemen will feel more and more at home), meaning that the tribesmen will start being less productive and be more prone to generate unrest. At the start of the game the Centralization levels of Tribal countries all around the map will differ, they start well into the negatives for the Germanic tribes for instance, while others like Turdetania in Hispania, starts with significant positive Centralization.

Clan Leaders and Retinues

A tribal government shares its power between clan leaders. The chief clan leader will be the government head. When the government head dies the new leader will be elected from among the clan leaders. The military might of the tribe is divested in clan leaders in the form of the clan leaders personal retinues.

Clan Retinues are recruited and reinforced by the Clan Leaders themselves, without using the manpower pool of the country and are also cheaper to upkeep. Since retinue troops are always loyal to their Clan Leader, these armies will also make it harder to rely on the loyalty of your Clan Leaders the bigger they are. Their presence also means that there are always armies ready to provoke a civil war, should you not be able to maintain the loyalty of your Clan Leaders. When a clan leader dies his retinues are transfered to the player can decide if disband it or not. The player can decide wich unit type clan retinues will use; because of that a valid strategy is to force clan chiefs to build expensive and strong units in retinues such as Heavy cavalry or Elephant that will cost no money to maintain nor manpower to reinforce.

Every Tribal country will have at least 3 Clan Leaders, with more added for each country rank the country attains.

Migrating and Settling

Migratory Tribes have the ability to migrate, and all Tribal governments can become a Migratory Tribe if they reach a sufficient degree of decentralization. Migration can be initiated in any city that has at least 3 pops and where the primary culture and religion are dominant, by clicking on the Migrate button in the city section of the province interface. It has a base cost of 8 Stability (reduced by negative Centralization).

Migrating will turn up to 20 of the pops in the city into Light Infantry. This creates an army that can move around like any army, except it does not require military access to cross foreign lands. All types of pops can be used to create a Migration cohort but once settled (see below) always turn into Tribesmen. To migrate is to let go of any old specialized roles they may have had in their original location.

Any army that has more Migration cohorts than there are pops in its current location can settle in that location. This will turn all Migration units into Tribesmen of your culture and religion and settle them in this city, taking ownership of it. In order to be able to settle the location must also either be uncolonized or under your control in a war. Like colonization and annexation, all pre-existing pops are kept.

Even if a country loses its last city it still remains playable as long as the Migration units remain, meaning you can quite literally uproot your entire society and resettle somewhere else.


Main article: Politics#Offices

Unless specified otherwise, all the modifiers value are multiplied by the Attribute of the office's holder.

Office Attribute Modifiers Description
Arbitrator Oratory power.png Monthly Agressive Expansion: -0.01 This office is in charge of managing domestic tribal relations and settling disputes in the name of the chief.
Elder Oratory power.png National Tribesmen Happiness: +1.5% This office is a senior member of the tribe selected for their experience, who advises the chief on tribal matters.
Warchief Military power.png Cohort Recruit Speed: +2% This office is the most senior military advisor to the chief responsible, for raising and managing their armies.
Bodyguard Military power.png Manpower Recovery Speed: +1.5% This office is in charge of managing the chief's personal bodyguards, retinues, and their morale.
High Priest Religious power.png Omen Power: +3% This office is the chief's most senior priest, and directs religious sacrifices, festivals, and divination.
Wise One Religious power.png National Citizen Happiness: +1% This office is selected for their learning and advises the chief on a wide variety of matters, from astronomy to technology.
Magistrate Civic power.png National Tax: +2% This office is in charge of the tribe's treasury and the collection of tribute in the name of the chief.
Apothecary Civic power.png Health: +0.005% This office supervises the medical treatment and health of the chief and tribal nobility.