This screen, the first option beneath your Headquarters on the main menu, displays information about all of your important dynasty members. Your House Leader is listed first followed by all his/her relations.
The description of each individual and his or her skills is given beneath the name. Beneath this, any additional information is displayed - such as whether or not the individual is expecting a child, suffering from illness, and so on. Be aware that a character will age twice in each game year - a 'year' in the game being an Imperial standard measure, whereas ages are measured in the equivalent of our own Earth years, for clarity.
There are two settings you may adjust from the Dynasty screen - Security level and Education (for younger adults only).
Security Level is an indication of the protection afforded to this individual by your security forces. This will depend upon how at risk you believe the individual to be from assassination attempts. Higher security levels are very expensive to maintain and will eat a big hole in your budget, so should only be used if you judge the risk to this individual to be serious. Otherwise, your money is better spent expanding your empire! There are five available levels of security for each individual, as follows:
All costs are in Galactic Solars, the standard unit of currency in Imperium Nova (see the Treasury section). By default, your House Leader has standard security and all your other House members minimal security. Once you have begun play you may adjust this as you see fit with immediate effect.
Your dynasty members aged 18-25 are eligible to benefit from education in order to improve their duelling and administrative skills. Unless you choose In-House education, which has very limited benefit, this will have a significant cost attached and will also prevent the selection of that individual as the leader of any of your spheres of activity, until the education is complete or the individual is recalled In-House.
Skills of those in education improve slowly over time, with a new level attainable perhaps every game year or so. However, the higher levels of skill are harder to reach. Additionally, younger characters will find it easier to improve their duelling skills, whereas older students will find it easier to improve their administrative skills. You may of course switch between different educational regimes as you see fit.
There are five educational options available, as follows:
Cost considerations are likely to play a major part in determining whether you send away your younger House members to be educated. The elite institutes will help improve a student's skills faster, but at greatly increased cost. It is also worth noting that should you opt to send a student to Military Academy or Elite Academy, a portion of the fees you pay will go to any Houses who are maintaining Military Academies on your homeworld.
At the start of the game, your 'older generation' characters are assumed to be married or otherwise unavailable for marriage, regardless of whether or not their partner is listed on your dynasty screen as an active member of your House. Younger dynasty members and those that come of age after you join the game will be able to marry into other dynasties, which can have benefits both in terms of increased status and improved relations between the two Houses - not to mention the prospect of bringing more children into the galaxy to prolong your dynasty. If this option is available to a particular character, you will see an 'eligible to marry' link beside the character name in the dynasty screen. Once married, the name of the partner will appear alongside the character name instead. See Marriages and Proposals for more details.
Aside from your dynasty members themselves, you may also hire retainers to take charge of your spheres of activity or for other purposes, such as standing on behalf of your House in senate elections, or acting as House Champion for duels. Retainers have the same characteristics as any other person in the game - charisma, intellect etc. Each retainer will require a set wage to be paid each month, the better the retainer the higher the wage will generally be. For more details, see the Retainers page.
Any of your characters may adopt a Faith. This is a process largely outside of your control, the chances being related to the strength of a given Faith on your homeworld, although if you adopt a House official Faith, your characters will be more likely to convert to that particular Faith. You will receive an event message when this occurs and the Faith and rank of a character will be displayed. You will also be able to carry out certain actions on behalf of your Faith and may be able to rise through the Faith hierarchy to higher ranks.
If there are any Faiths active in your Galaxy, you may find your dynastic and retainer characters will get the religion bug and adopt a Faith. The exact Faith adopted will depend upon the percentage of converts of each Faith on your homeworld, and also whether your House has adopted a House Faith. If your House operates in the Mysticism Sphere, then your House Faith is already selected. Otherwise, you may adopt a House Faith chosen from any Faith which has one or more of your characters as a convert. Other characters in your dynasty are more likely to convert to this Faith than any other.
Effects of Character Faith - Aside from allowing a House to convert to a particular Faith, once a character has converted to a given Faith, the possibility may be open to him or her to advance through the Faith Hierarchy to more senior positions in the Faith in question. Whenever a dynasty member or retainer loyal to your House achieves a higher rank within a Faith, you will gain a small amount of status. Holders of the rank immediately below the Head of Faith will also be able to vote for the new Head of Faith once the current incumbent dies. In this way, you may even be able to take the Head of Faith position yourself.
Faith Hierarchy advancement options, and voting if applicable, can be accessed via the 'Faith Options' link that will appear on the dynasty page next to a character that has adopted a Faith.
Each Faith will have assigned certain requirements to progressing from rank to rank. If you choose to advance any of your characters through the Faith Hierarchy, you may be able to assist the Faith through building missions and other religious buildings, or through sponsoring Proselytization campaigns to boost the number of converts on a planet. Thus your characters will have some importance to the founder of the Faith in question, especially if you have access to planets outside of the range of that House. Note however that some Faiths may not have a hierarchy at all, and may have only two ranks - Initiate and Head of Faith. In this case, the only way to improve your standing within the Faith is to become the Head of Faith, by vote of all the Initiates upon death of the previous incumbent.
That concludes the Dynasty section. Note that you can also view the Dynasty screen for another House through the link provided on their HQ page, however you will not see their security or education settings. To discover the security arrangements of another House you must have first successfully infiltrated that House with an agent (see Covert Ops).
Education is often considered one of the most important tasks that you should invest in. Even starting houses that cannot afford 2000 solar a month education should still pay for it, requesting subsidies from larger houses and allies. This is because it is easily possible to get an average administrator up to an Unsurpassed administrator with 8 years of educations, and still possible for even an abysmal administrator. Even though Administrators are much less effective now than they were before, an 8% increase in income and decrease in maintenance from a very well qualified administrator has an amazing difference compared to a 2% benefit from a slightly above average one.
Hiring a good retainer is hard to do - not only are high-quality retainers rarely seen, but they are often hired out by larger houses with more cash reserves, income, and status than you. A good administrator through education could be your ticket to eventually becoming one of the bigger houses in the galaxy.