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So new concept maybe to add to mercenary system/faction inner workings how about a guard region contract (hopefully ai could determine where to give it correctly) and player could also issue it to mercenary and lords not attached to an area specifically already. This would make it so you would both clear bandits and protect caravans in this area for money on top of a daily fee (or however payment would work,now this guard army would fall back to castle or city when a big presence entered its area of guard influence.this would make it so maybe just maybe a lord would actually be able to hold a castle during a siege and also at same time keep region prosperous when not under siege I don't code but i feel is some what possible.,maybe even more complicated version of influence as a mercenary called like reputation or something where you gain it similarly to influence , by fulfilling contracts defending towns cities in your dependable area and it increases your wages for contracts maybe recruitment stuff etc and losing it by well, not doing your job well not killing looters in area letting caravans get sacked maybe losing as well maybe too little action for high wages cost you lose a bit of rep to set a balance so you don't just sky rocket in rep. Your not lord of area just paid to guard it more money for higher problem areas etc would make mercenary clans (maybe add new type faction that only has aspirations to be mercenaries and will travel around often looking for contracts would be using this rep currency but don't want land titles or any of that more notable as well could use the rep thing as mentioned to show how prestigious they've been in your play thorough and maybe get like rivalries and relationships between them. Player could also ask to hired for this role and maybe ai selects area or maybe player does, (would be really cool if player could ask specific lords who own region or governors and you could ask to guard their area specifically, and vice versa if ai mercenary or un- owned land lord (in allied,(maybe even neutral) faction),entered your land you could hire them to guard it, maybe even do that while you go crusading. This would i feel allow a shifting battle line as frontier high battle zones get more mercenaries paid to guard it by owners and what not (long term maybe have opposite where you can hire raiders to disrupt a region for pay ,a ying to yang type deal). Would also allow a new player play style by basically being an upgraded mercenary yield focused to a specific region but not only for a set time. great for role play as well and could be tinkered with as needed or wanted.As lord could maybe hire companions out to do this as well i don't know. This concept could be used many ways as well and could be a land owner perk thing where hiring them is cheaper more effective whatever you want as the land owner etc, just a whole new element to game that also i think addresses a game play issue. Not as easy to make as say i get but hey its a start.