Upon death, the candidate with most votes inherits all the titles.
- One of the few succession laws with no tech requirements. Particularly for Indians, feudal elective is the only non-gavelkind succession law available to them with no technology requirements.
- Only available to Muslims, Indians, and most unreformed pagans if "council authority" council law is passed. (Requires Conclave DLC)
- When the election goes your way, succession is much smoother.
- Vassals have a huge opinion boost of +20 (+10 with the Conclave DLC), making the realm more stable.
- Claimant factions can form for any eligible candidate, even if they do not have a claim.
- If someone outside your dynasty is elected, extra titles (duchies and below) are given to your children.
- If they have no other titles, it is game over!
A ruler under feudal elective will face the following opinion modifiers:
|Oldest child||-30||He would prefer primogeniture.|
|All other children set to inherit||-10||They would prefer gavelkind.|
|All other dynasty members||-5||Someone outside the dynasty might inherit.|
|All vassals||+20||Everyone gets a chance
However, if the ruler owns more than one Elector title (can hold one Empire, Kingdom and Duchy) they get -15.
|Candidate heir||+50||Obviously he likes your choice|
Importantly, vassals who are of your dynasty only get the "All other dynasty members" penalty. They don't get the"All vassals" bonus.
Too many held elector titles
There is a malus of -15 (stacking) that applies to all electors when the liege personally holds too many elector titles. It works similarly to the "too many duchies" malus.
Currently, it appears that the Malus applies any time you hold more than 1 title of a tier directly below your primary title. For example, if you hold 2+ de jure kingdoms in an empire, 2+ de jure duchies in a kingdom, etc.
If an elector is also Ambitious , this will activate ambition opinion, causing an additional "-25 ambitious".
You can avoid the penalty by destroying duchy titles. Take care, as this may reduce the size of your family's realm should your family lose an election. Destroying duchy titles for a demesne duchy is relatively safe.
- Valid electors are all holders of de jure vassal titles one tier lower than the elected title (and of the current title holder's religion?). This may include non de facto vassals of your realm, if you don't control all de jure territories.
- In titular realms, all vassal rulers of the appropriate rank may vote.
- Empires are an exception: both dukes and kings may vote.
- Each elector gets a single vote, regardless of how many electoral titles they hold.
- The current ruler always gets a vote, and also breaks ties.
Potential candidates are:
- The ruler's children, grandchildren, siblings, nephews, nieces, and spouse. They must be either the same dynasty as the ruler, or landed within the realm (a county is sufficient).
- Rulers with sufficient rank to be electors, who are either:
- Direct vassals (even when they are not electors themselves)
- Electors who are not under your control
However, the following characters are always ineligible:
- Rulers or heirs of republics, merchant republics, or theocracies
- Characters who cannot inherit, such as Bastards
- Characters with eligible fathers (e.g. can't skip a living son to nominate a grandson, or skip a living brother to nominate a nephew or niece)
- Characters with a different religion, if the ruler is a Caliph or Fylkir
- Women, if gender law is strictly Agnatic
The voting screen shows who each voter supports. For details on how AI voters evaluate candidates, see Succession voting.
Help your candidate
- Avoid nominating young children. A brother might be easier to elect than a 2-year-old child.
- Help young children look good. Opinion of non-ruler children is based on their educator's personal diplomacy skill. Hence, a high-diplomacy guardian is often a good choice when trying to elect a minor.
- Give an elector-rank title to the best dynastic candidate: If you have a genius kinsman who is very distantly related to you, giving him a ducal title will make him a valid nominee.
- Give a voting title to your candidate: They will likely vote for themselves. (Warning: as an AI ruler, he will have many chances to get himself into trouble. For example, he may seduce the wives of other vassals and gain rivals.)
- Voters from your dynasty: By giving voting titles exclusively to characters from your dynasty, you can ensure that the heir will always be a member of your dynasty. However, your own children will be future claimants, so it is often safer to land distant relatives. Also, members of your own dynasty do not like feudal elective succession, as a non-dynasty member could (theoretically) inherit. You will suffer a -5 opinion penalty with them, effectively cancelling out the +5 bonus for being of the same dynasty, in contrast to the +20 opinion bonus from vassals of other dynasties.
- Honorary titles can significantly boost their prestige.
- Cupbearer has no age restrictions
- Designed Regent for adult heirs
- Commander for men, if you can keep them out of danger
Damage other candidates
- Check who is getting votes in the Inheritance tab of the Laws screen (F4).
- Assassination may be possible, even against likeable candidates, due to the number of potential conspirators in a large realm.
- Spying with the Intrigue focus gives you many methods of imprisoning them without tyranny. You can then throw them in the oubliette for -20 diplomacy and -2 health. If this isn't enough, for minor tyranny penalties, you can banish them (forcing them to abdicate to their heir) or even execute them.
- Revoke titles to invalidate candidates. Imperial administration with duchy viceroys is excellent for this; an elector who votes wrong way, or himself is a candidate, can be stripped of his viceroy title and electoral rights with no tyranny. Catholics can use a vassal pope or antipope to claim vassal titles.
- Have zero or one vassal electors. By leaving duchies unfounded or destroying them, you can control an election completely, even in a medium-size kingdom. You might also give all duchies to a single "super-duke", but gavelkind makes this situation precarious.
Avoid realm splits
- Avoid holding multiple top tier titles (kingdoms or empires): Electors may not choose the same candidate for both, causing grief similar to gavelkind.
- Use kingdom viceroyalties: if you have kingdoms outside your de jure empire, consider making them viceroyalties. This overrides the succession law in the kingdom and prevents separate elections there.
- Spread your culture: You have a better chance of the same candidate winning multiple elections if each set of electors shares your culture.
- Have a large dynasty: Gives more potential suitable candidates within your dynasty.
- Grant dynasty Elector titles: this makes it more likely that your heir will be a member of your dynasty. If possible, grant all elector titles to members of your own dynasty, as this makes it certain that a member of your dynasty will inherit.