Royal houses are a group of people, lead by a person of royal title, all united under a single banner and in service to a king or emperor. Royal houses are a commonly used faction in fictional worlds and can be found in a variety of world genres, from fantasy to science fiction. Plots between royal houses and individuals within a single house often form the basis for fictional narratives and can help drive the events of an entire fictional history. Royal houses are home to dukes, captains of the guard, assassins, and whispering advisors.
Designing Fictional Royal Houses
Fictional royal houses will often have unique heraldry: colors, symbols, flags, and emblems associated with them. They may also possess unique mottos. These trappings can be used by worldbuilders to quickly provide contextual clues to an audience.
Territory & Holdings
Fictional houses may have ancestral lands they govern over at the behest of a king or emperor. These houses are charged with the safety and taxation of these lands. While in fantasy worlds these areas may be akin to a small country with borders, in science fiction worlds this territory may be an entire planet, solar system, or collection of space locations.
Royal houses are composed of a royal family and a retinue of people who serve and support them. The head of a royal house may be a king/queen, duke/duchess, baron/baroness, or other person who possesses a royal title. The head of the house and their family are waited on, protected, and served, by a group of housekeepers, servants, advisors, guards, and others. This structure allows for a myriad of potential narratives, from betrayals, to romances, to heroic sacrifices.