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Morale is a unit stat which reflects a unit's willingness to stay in combat in the face of adversity. Various things affect a unit's morale:

  • All units under the command of an inspirational leader.
  • Animals under the command of a beastmaster commander.
  • Slaves under the command of an taskmaster leader.
  • Magic items such as the Dragon Helm will boost a commander's morale.
  • The fire bless effect.
  • Being blessed gives all non-independents +1 morale.
  • Sermon of Courage or Fanaticism
  • Experience stars.
  • Flat modifiers displayed in the army setup menu. These are based on the leading commander's leadership value and number of squads, as well as mixing undead, demons or living creatures.
  • Being in a squad with any undisciplined units lowers morale by 1. Note that all undisciplined units get this penalty, it merely extends to any disciplined units they share a squad with.
  • Being in sparse line or skirmish formations without the skirmisher trait lowers morale by 1.
  • Being exposed to Fear aura or spells with fear effects temporarily lowers morale. This seems to recover by 3 approximately every 5000 ticks. No single or combination of fear effects may lower morale by more than 5, however.
  • Battle fright lowers morale by 5.
  • Starvation lowers morale by 4.
  • Blood Rain lowers the morale of all units on the battlefield by 4.
  • Dark Skies lowers morale of enemies in the caster's dominion by 1 per point of the caster's dominion in the province.
  • Being in friendly dominion increases morale by 1. Conversely, being in hostile dominion lowers morale by 1.
  • Units in their home province have a morale increase of 1.

Note that several morale values are special. Morale 30 cannot be boosted any higher. Morale 50 units are always mindless and do not retreat for any reason. Units that have gone berserk have 99 morale and will also not rout for any reason.


Every round of battle, the game checks for units which must make a morale check. This affects units that have1):

  • Suffered heavy losses since its last morale check, and overall casualties are at 20%. "Heavy losses" is defined as one "wound" per two squad members. A "wound" in this instance is at least one or more hitpoints of damage that lowers a unit to below 80% of its maximum hitpoints.
  • The squad less than five units in it, and has taken damage this round.
  • The unit has been subjected to a spell or effect causing fear, such as the spell Terrify or the effect of a Fear aura.
  • The entire army has taken 50% or more of its starting health in casualties. If there was only one creature and its retinue, the retinue is not considered for this.

Practically, taking a morale check makes a roll as follows:

  • Morale roll: (Unit's morale + squad survivor bonus) + DRN
  • Fear roll: 142) + DRN

The squad survivor bonus is a value of 0-5 that reflects the number of units in the squad that have been killed.

If the fear roll exceeds (but not ties) the morale roll, the squad or commander routs.

Manual, page 83
The manual states 13 for this value, but the debug log clearly shows this should be 14 and that tied rolls do not cause a rout
morale.txt · Last modified: 2020/12/02 01:38 by loggy