The border of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms and Wales is a wild frontier, neither English nor Welsh. Marcher lords rule fiefdoms that thrive in this no-man’s land between two civilizations; where the ancient Britannic people of Wales live as uneasy neighbors of the more recent Germanic Anglo-Saxon conquerors and settlers of Britain.
The normal Earl Card rules of Ortus Regni and the normal victory conditions apply. Holding a Fief in the Welsh Marches will allow an Earl to remain in the game even if all the Fiefs in their Earldom are lost.
There are two Fiefs in the Welsh Marches. Each of these are captured separately. And each Welsh Marches Fief is a Castle, strength 2, and also initially (and when neutral again) has two Infantry which are automatically fielded on defense when attacked.
An Earl must therefore initially Siege a Welsh Marches Fief with 4 incoming attack points to claim it; Each Fief is initially defended, so a Battle Card will be drawn. Unlike the Vikings, Welsh Marches Fiefs do accept Ransoms, but any Properties offered as ransom payments are sent to the appropriate discard pile, rather than being given to the Fief.
Once a Welsh Marches Fief has been captured place a Viking bag cube of that Earl’s color onto the circle by that Fief. The captured Fief is now part of that Earl’s holdings, and the property can be used normally; such as using a Fief’s Lands to Recruit or field armies), and the Church might be useful to Bequeath or to control the Church Decides Battle Result card.
Due to their great distance from the heartland of your Earldom, Marcher Fiefs have the following restrictions:
Once a Welsh Marches Fief has been captured, it plays as a normal Castle – with strength 2 – and that Fief no longer has its automatic 2 Infantry defenders. The Earl who owns it must chose what to field into Battle to defend it. A Welsh Marches Fief is also beyond an Earl’s Towers.
The Vikings can be directed by an Earl to attack a Fief in the Welsh Marches, and if that Siege is successful the Fief reverts to being neutral and unconquered again (i.e. it regains its 2 infantry defenders).