good info, thanks. not really sure what my vp is after the fight but im pretty sure im not getting the megail points since she doesnt have the declaration of loyalty from 100 rp until after house jade, which i assume is worth some affection. ill have to parse the chart again, but if its as low as i think i may need to pay the nobles twice. or redo the battle with an eye toward vp instead of chaos/collateral. i also dont think i can get enough acceptance for more petitioners since there arent any there before leaving for the sylvan region.
edit: something doesnt add up with these charts. you know how i listed what orcent states, plus the pre battle bonuses the charts say i should get? well, outcomes down the line seem to be running off a lower quality than the applied total, which is right in line for the stated amount, but also a higher size than the stated amount with no bonuses. this is confusing and i do not know how to math it now. i dont believe i can get either number to zero even during the governance phase though. i THINK im at 18 VP, 3 Chaos (after governing), and 2 collateral damage (after healing thelon). I may be able to play around with the battle to try and focus on one thing and see if i cant bring it down.
more editing: figured out my baseline for the battle
Army Size: 27
Army Quality: 11
Simon's Level: 34
Aka Affection: cant check, but 90 in govern. best collateral damage gives +5, so assuming 85.
Carina Affection: 52
Megail Affection: 94
Janine Affection: 77
EVEN MORE EDITING: I think i may have my exact results by the end (just for the evaluation phase, not the parts after). this is a gigantic, frustrating headache.
VP 17, Chaos 4, Collateral Damage 4
except that cant be right, because by the time i finish with petitions and affection checks i should be governing at 18 VP, 4 chaos, and 0 collateral damage, but there was a budget guy for collateral. I AM SO CONFUSED.
a wild idea though - this needs a quick mechanics question answered: does the affection gain from VP/Chaos/Collateral kick in BEFORE the affection check? because if aka really is at 85, and it does, then if i go back to the reunion and talk to megail instead of aka, the +2 she gets from low chaos would push her to 100 from 99 and by extension reduce my chaos by 2 more, which might let me zero it out in the governing phase while holding on to my 18 vp...
also, as far as adjusting the battle itself goes, i am able to trade 1 army size for 1 chaos reduction, but...not worth it. governing well gets me a -2 total, and from 4 that extra -1 wont zero out, and ill end up spending the 10% of my budget anyway. if going back and manipulating the megail and aka situation actually works (not sure tbh), then ill get a -2, and zero out WITHOUT the extra -1 so its irrelevant.
running the numbers on staying mixed or forcing the enemy formation to be widespread just doesn't work out. its clustered or bust here.