Dominion scales are the representation of the effect that the belief in one’s pretender god affects not only the populace but the very fabric of a province. When creating a pretender, you choose the way in which your religious belief changes the cosmic forces in provinces where your dominion holds sway.
Each scale has a favorable side and an unfavorable side. For example, Growth is the favorable side of the Growth/Death scale. You can guess which side Death is. For each tip of the scale, bonuses or penalties accrue to the province under the sway of that dominion.
You can gain extra points for pretender creation by choosing unfavorable scales. Scales tip both ways, which is why they're called scales.
Scales are influenced by magic sites in a province, even if the site has not been discovered. Random events can often cause temporary changes in scales, as well as some events requiring certain scales to occur.
|Scale||Effect||Effect in hostile dominion|
|Order||Increases income by 3%. Resources +3%. Recruitment +10%.||None|
|Unrest reduction +1. 2% fewer random events.†||Same|
|Turmoil||Decreases income by 3%. Resources -3%. Recruitment -10%.||Same|
|Unrest reduction -1. 2% more random events.†||Same|
|Productivity||Increases income by 3% and resources by 15%.||None|
|Sloth||Decreases income by 3% and resources by 15%.||Same|
|Heat/Cold||Each step of heat/cold level away from a nation's ideal level decreases income by 5% and supplies by 10%.||Same, based on your nation's preferences.|
|Growth||Increases population growth by 0.2% per month.||Same|
|Increases supplies by 15%.||Same|
|Increases income by 2%.||Same|
|Death||Decreases population growth by 0.2% per month.||Same|
|Decreases supplies by 15%.||Same|
|Decreases income by 2%.||Same|
|Luck||5% more random events.†||Same|
|Chance of a random event being good increased by 10%.||None|
|Misfortune||5% more random events.†||Same|
|Chance of a random event being good decreased by 10%.||Same|
|Magic||Makes spells harder to resist (-0.5 MR per scale rounded down, to all units in a province).||Same|
|All spellcasting generates 10% less fatigue per scale.||Same|
|Gives all mages +1 research points per scale.||None|
|+50 points of starting research per scale.||n/a|
|Drain||Makes spells easier to resist (+0.5 MR per scale rounded down, to all units in a province).||Same|
|All spellcasting generates 10% more fatigue per scale.||Same|
|Gives all mages -1 research points per scale.||Same|
|-50 points of starting research per scale.||n/a|
†The amount of random events a nation gets (disregarding Bringers of Fortune/Misfortune) is affected only by the scales in their capital. These events are then doled out to random provinces the nation has, and the event that occurs is then determined by the scales in the province selected. More research has to be done to determine if this stays true while the capital is held by another nation.
Your opponents' dominion spread their hostile scales, just as your dominion spreads yours. No difference is made in how scales came to be, be it from friendly dominion, hostile dominion, random events, magic sites, etc. However, scales affect a province differently depending on whether the current dominion is friendly or hostile, i.e. if the candles are white or black.
A general rule of thumb is that you only get negative effects from scales in hostile dominion. The growth scale is the exception to this rule.
The chosen scales also affect the game in a few other ways:
The scales in a province under your dominion will likely not initially exactly correspond to the scales you’ve chosen. This is because the dominion scales in a province change more slowly than the level of dominion. It may take several turns of strong dominion over a province to tip the scales to the settings you chose at the outset. If you have low dominion over a province, your scales will likely never ramp up to full value.
When you create your pretender, the dominion scales you choose will spread with your dominion. This does not all occur at once – if you have Order 3, provinces with low friendly dominion may only gain Order 1 or 2. Over time, they will reflect your chosen scales. Each turn a province has your dominion in it there will be a small chance for each scale to tip one step towards your chosen dominion. The chance for this to happen is (5% multiplied by the dominion level in the province) plus (10% multiplied by the difference between the actual scale and your nation's scale).
Thus, a big difference between your scales and the scales in a province makes the provincial scales react more quickly. Once the difference has become small, the chance of tipping the scales is reduced. Likewise, having a strong dominion in a province makes the provincial scales change faster (but this is only half as important as the difference in scales is).