Taxes are one of the core aspect of the Stronghold games. It is a source of gold and sometimes, popularity.
Taxes are a primary source of money that is taken from civilians for running and maintaining your castle. Their rate increases by population, but it can also be determined by the player, which can vary from no taxes to cruel taxes and generous bribes. Higher taxes result in being unpopular and thus it generates negative popularity. Taxes are usually counteracted by other positive popularity: ale, religion and food rations.
Civilians can also be paid money for as bribery too, taking away gold from the treasury but increasing popularity. Bribes can come in handy when (typically) there is food shortage.
Gold from taxes/bribery are added/subtracted in the end of each month. Stronghold Legends introduced a constant flow of gold so that popularity correlates more with gold gained. Taxes from estates however, have a fixed amount and they net a monthly (daily in SHC2) fee.
- In the early patches of Stronghold 2. the treasurer had to wander out to the estates and civilians in order to take money. He could also be attacked and killed, in which case he lost all the money he carried with himself.
- Civilians always make a remark upon taxing. Bribes cause them to make happy, while heavy taxing makes them complain about their hunger and families. Gold flow is similarly accounted by the scribe.