Foundations of Empire
The rules described below are excerpted from GameMastery Guide (p. 203-213) but are not repeated here in their entirety. Players are encouraged to read the rules printed there or here (Settlements) as well.
Corruption measures how open a settlement’s officials are to bribes, how honest its citizens are, and how likely anyone in town is to report a crime. Low corruption indicates a high level of civic honesty. A settlement’s corruption modifies all Bluff checks made against city officials or guards and all Stealth checks made outside (but not inside buildings or underground).
Crime is a measure of a settlement’s lawlessness. A settlement with a low crime modifier is relatively safe, with violent crimes being rare or even unknown, while a settlement with a high crime modifier is likely to have a powerful thieves’ guild and a significant problem with violence. The atmosphere generated by a settlement’s crime level applies as a modifier on Sense Motive checks to avoid being bluffed and to Sleight of Hand checks made to pick pockets.
A settlement’s economy modifier indicates the health of its trade and the wealth of its successful citizens. A low economy modifier doesn’t automatically mean the town is beset with poverty – it could merely indicate a town with little trade or one that is relatively self-sufficient. Towns with high economy modifiers always have large markets and many shops. A settlement’s economy helps its citizens make money, and thus it applies as a modifier on all Craft, Perform, and Profession checks made to generate income.
Law measures how strict a settlement’s laws and edicts are. A settlement with a low law modifier isn’t necessarily crime-ridden – in fact, a low law modifier usually indicates that the town simply has little need for protection since crime is so rare. A high law modifier means the settlement’s guards are particularly alert, vigilant, and well-organized. The more lawful a town is, the more timidly its citizens tend to respond to shows of force. A settlement’s law modifier applies on Intimidate checks made to force an opponent to act friendly, Diplomacy checks against government officials, or Diplomacy checks made to call on the city guard.
A settlement’s lore modifier measures not only how willing the citizens are to chat and talk with visitors, but also how available and accessible its libraries and sages are. A low lore modifier doesn’t mean the settlement’s citizens are idiots, just that they’re close-mouthed or simply lack knowledge resources. A settlement’s lore modifier applies on Diplomacy checks made to gather information and Knowledge checks made using the city’s resources to do research when using a library.
Society measures how open-minded and civilized a settlement’s citizens are. A low society modifier might mean many of the citizens harbor prejudices or are overly suspicious of out-of-towners. A high society modifier means that citizens are used to diversity and unusual visitors and that they respond better to well-spoken attempts at conversation. A settlement’s society modifier applies on all Disguise checks, as well as on Diplomacy checks made to alter the attitude of any non-government official.