Possible ways of choosing Crown

What are the broad approaches?

The alternative crown selection debate has been around for a long time, and it has surfaced in different ways.  There are different classes of solution, and within each class there are lots of potential variations.

This is intended to be a short list of broad categories that cover everything.  If you can think of an approach that doesn’t fit under any of these headings, we need to hear about it now.  It doesn’t need to be worked out in detail – in fact, we don’t want detail yet.   The goal is to put everything out there, and then eliminate the approaches that have little support, so that we can focus our efforts on the ones that have some appeal.

Commentary is appreciated on each approach. Which would work, what formats would be most effective, what would be problems to watch out for. This is a data gathering exercise so please give us your views so we can prepare a comprehensive list.  The discussion forum is open to anyone, and will be collecting your thoughts until the end of Rowany Festival 2024.

Tournaments or competitions for different skills

This is probably the simplest change– instead of having a heavy combat crown tourney, crown is selected by a rapier tournament, or archery, or arts and sciences, or game of skill.

What we would like to know is what tournaments should be included.  Armoured, Rapier, Archery, perhaps A&S? Is there something else you think should be added?

If this was chosen, in general terms, how would you like it to work?

Success over time

In this approach, the selection of Crown is not based on winning a single Crown tournament, but through a series of events over a period of time.  The heir to the Crown might be the person who wins the most bouts during the current Crown’s reign, or the person who participates in the most events in some way.  The selection criteria would still be prowess in one or more fields, but the way of measuring prowess could be very different from a single tournament.

Do you think this is a viable option?  What do you see as the strengths and weaknesses of this approach?

Election or appointment

This is the presidential model, with the subsequent debate about who should have a vote, or choose the crown.  The main variations include election through universal suffrage (everyone gets a vote), or election by a sub-group of electors.  There are also the options of a quantitative election (whoever gets the most votes wins) or a qualitative selection process (akin to the way we seek commentary on Baronial candidates).

If this was chosen, in general terms, how would you like it to work?

Tournament with/of champions

There have been many discussions over the years about the prospect of a crown tourney where one or more fighters were competing not to sit on the throne themselves, but as champion for some other couple.  The main variations within this class would be a tournament where some fighters were competing on their own behalf, while others were acting as champions, versus a tournament where all the combatants were champions.  In a tournament where all the fighters were champions, there would be two possibilities – in one case, the crown contenders would get to choose their champions, and in the other the assignment of champion to couple would be random (the fighter lists close, the crown lists close, and there is a draw to see who is fighting for whom).

It would help to know what format of Champions Tournament you would like. If this were chosen, how would you like it to work?

War, and other team sports

In this approach, the Crown would be chosen as the leader of a group or team who won some collective contest.  Assuming the contest is a war, that might be between armies of just one sort of combatant or mixed, armies recruited from within a specific group or across groups.  Fighters might be selected by each Crown aspirant, or randomly assigned to armies… there are a lot of options.

Do you think group contests would be a good idea? How would you imagine it working?


Contenders for crown go into a draw of some sort, with chance deciding the winner.

If you are in favour of this format, how do you see it working? What challenges should we avoid?

No Crown

It would be possible to have nobody on the Crown at all, for a limited period.  This could be done by appointing a Vicar, or simply leaving the running of the Kingdom to the Kingdom Seneschals and Barons/Baronesses.

Completely abolishing the position of Crown would be the most extreme change that could be made, but adopting a cycle where the Crown was occasionally vacant could be attractive to some people as a way of reducing burnout among Crown candidates, and among groups hosting Crown events.

If you are interested in this model how often should Crown be left fallow? How would you see us choosing Crowns outside of this model?

Got another idea?

Tell us what you’ve thought of!  Please only use this form to let us know about an option you don’t think fits in any of the above categories.  To provide comments on any of the ideas already identified, head over to the discussion forum at https://altcrown.lochac.sca.org.

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