I think anonymity is a red herring.
Whether you watch American football or other football or any sport, in real matches there are officials. I'll probably offend someone by suggesting that football is just a game. In football, like any other sport or contest, people will sometimes/usually/almost always push the limits right up to the edge and beyond. As the saying goes, "If you aren't cheating, you aren't trying. And if you get caught cheating, you aren't trying hard enough."
If a game doesn't have refs or if the refs aren't effective, the limits can get pushed further and further as players on either side escalate.
It's not about anonymity. It's about someone in authority making sure the game (or other situation) is played by the rules. And sometimes the league has to look at things ("Hey, are these end-zone dances are getting out of hand?" "Hey, maybe we should have players wear helmets, five guys died this month." "Hey, what's with Schmedlap driving his helmet into the quarterback's spine?" ) and adjust the rules or tighten up enforcement. The change might be something the players don't want (or aren't willing to say they want), but the league might decide it needs to be changed for the good of the game, or public image, or whatever.
In the end, any game has rules, and the rules have to be enforced. If the persons in authority indicate that there are no rules or that the normal rules won't be enforced, then players/people will keep pushing limits.
I don't think we really need to worry about actualy dropping the item on the ground. EFFECTIVELY putting the weapon back into your inventory serves the same function. Especialy in PFO where inventory gets destroyed upon looting.
I'd think that "dropped" weapons could be flagged as such in inventory, for two reasons: (1) if the player chooses to flee the battle, dropped items would be lost, and (2) say a player wants to use bow, then sword, then bow - the first switch from bow to sword is quick, but the bow is dropped. The second switch would be slower because the dropped bow needs to be recovered.
Weapons could have varying "ready" times instead; that might have the same effect. Switching to a crossbow or bow might take a lot more time than switching to a dagger; it might be quicker to ready common throwing weapons like javelins or axes than to switch to a shield and sword.
I'd think that implementing lots of food objects that need to be managed could put huge demands on the game. (Think "how fresh are the 50 different food objects in Urman's pack right now?" x 50k players).
I think hunger/thirst might be implemented better with players getting minor long-term buffs for being fed. Fed buffs could be gained at an inn, by successfully completing a hunt or forage action/event in the wilderness, or by other means. Different methods could provide different-length buffs.
Some food resources do need to be in the game, but it could be general like meat, grain, etc. Inns should require a steady supply of food resources to stay operational. Food resources should be objects that can be stacked (hence a "meat" resource, rather than 20-30 different meaty objects that can't be stacked together). Hand-wave away decay of food resources. The decay of food used by the players is covered by the buff timers.
My opinion is that shields should definitely drop on death. They would be taking a lot of abuse in combat to begin with and should be considered part of any army's list of expendable supplies. Offhand weapons? Dunno.
iirc, the reason for not being able to fully loot PCs was not to protect us from losing stuff when we died, but to lower the payoff from killing. That is, if killing PCs or NPCs pays out significantly better than all other adventuring activities, then the game is reduced to the one best path - killing for teh loots. If PC/NPC drops are comparable to other harvesting (considering risk, time spent, etc.) then there are more paths to fun.
My take is that it is not a test/rehearsal but a release of the actual game to a smaller group in order to start building the world and setting the seeds and direction for further development. This phase yet to be named will presumably last until capacity catches up with demand at which point the game is de facto open to all.
rw, I think you're right here. We'd be done with alpha and beta tests and would be placing initial players, more each month.
I think this phase is "post-Beta Player Seeding and Ramp-up".
Has nothing to do with freedom of speech... GW's House - GW's Rules. Just like when you come into my House you respect my rules or you're invited to leave. That's called "property rights".
Agreed - the latest post is spelling out the table rules for all of us. And since there will be 100s of people at the table, and some of them will be kids or women, one table rule will be "don't be a jerk with what you say."
Adding to this, non-standard variations of known creatures (named, strong, special attacks or defenses) could be part of the random spawns from harvest sites as well as dungeons - and the most developed sites (worked by many people over a long time) would have more chance of the non-standard spawns.
I'd suggest "War" be used to describe a state of hostility between one or more companies, settlements or nations and another...and that it not require mutual consent (i.e. you can go on a conquest rampage if you want and are able). However, NPC territories are inviolate as they are "neutral powers" and don't tolerate open hostility between warring factions in thier territory. (That's pretty much how things work in the real world...most times). This would match the expectations that people would have surrounding the term "War". Also, I think it'd be nice...just for informational purposes if the game had a way of recognizing and displaying an "official" state of hostility by one entity upon another.
I agree there's room for tightening up terminology.
There's one state, where members of group Gamma attack members or property of group Epsilon, without official approval from the Gamma leader(s). This might be called raiding or something else. Epsilon might also be attacking Gamma people in a similar fashion.
The next state is when the Epsilon leader(s) give official sanction for Epsilon members to attack Gamma people and property. This might be called hostilities, war, or something else.
The next state is when Gamma leadership gives their people official sanction, which might be called mutual hostilities, war, or something else. In this state, both groups have entered into official conflict with each other and may now attack each other in NPC territory, if I understand it correctly.
@Nihimon - I do think you have a valid question. Since this is the contracts thread: If a nation or meta-charter founds a settlement, can they install someone as mayor, and use the power of contract enforcement to hold the mayor to his oaths?
I'd take that further and propose a settlement ruler type of "governor", that is, someone appointed for a limited term by the nation that owns the settlement. Governors should be able to be recalled by the nation.
What I'm wondering about specifically is having a Settlement that was ostensibly founded as part of our meta-organization, but where the local Oligarchy in the Settlement goes rogue and starts ignoring the rulings of the Star Chamber that runs the Player Nation. In that case, what tools will the Player Nation have to enforce its will?
I think the follow-up question is: if some group names themselves something to pass as part of your meta organization, even if you didn't approve it, is there supposed to be some mechanism besides PvP to enforce your trademark or name?
I think the idea of some sub-settlement or sub-company going rogue sounds like it is well within the spirit of the game as it has been described so far. PvP is there in part to let players settle their differences without GW mods getting involved.
Patrick Curtin wrote:
Hmm. As a tangent: Is there really any hope of keeping names 'Golarion-pure?' Just a question.
We've discussed it elsewhere, but like Nihimon says, the game would have to assign names. Even if the players all agreed to use Golorion-pure names, there's also a problem that after about the first 5000 names it will be harder and harder for players to pull up good names from their imaginations.
My recollection of the GW blog entries to date is that murder/unlawful killing is pretty much limited to killing people in the secure areas around NPC towns. And even in the secure areas some kills were legitimate (flagged criminals, executing bounties, killing enemies in a mutually declared war?).
On the other hand, with magic existing in the Pathfinder world and available to be utilized by millitary commanders...perhaps they wouldn't likely be prone to the same level of difficulty in Command and Control that real world historical commanders in the pre-modern era were?
I think that many command and control challenges, like attacking friendly forces, have existed throughout history. Consider Stonewall Jackson in the US Civil War, shot by his own pickets by mistake, or Tillman shot by fellow Rangers in Afghanistan. That kind of stuff is impossible in most MMOs - you often can't hurt friendlies. Fog of war is timeless as well, and in a world with magic there could be deliberate action to make the battlefield even foggier.
The feudal societies of Europe had a lot of command and control problems in part because the commanders were lords, not soldiers. Command of formations was based on social rank as much as anything. I don't know how much this maps over to other societies - feudal Japan might have had similar problems, but I don't know enough about non-feudal societies. The Romans didn't seem to have the same infighting between units, though there were undoubtedly politics.
I would be interested in joining such a group as proposed. Although it seems like the difficulty of managing such an organization might possibly outweigh the pleasure of playing PFO. Especially for an admitted casual gamer as myself. :(
In any group of gamers there will always be some that have more time or energy to lead and manage big operations. From some of the stuff Ryan has written in the blog, larger group harvesting might be more effective than a lot of small groups harvesting. If that is the case, it makes sense for people who might prefer to solo in high security areas to group up instead. They can group either informally as a pick up group, or formally, under the leadership of a chartered company.
Patrick Curtin wrote:
There might be room for some material gathering (and resulting PvE encounters) in the protected zones near the NPCs settlements. I've long thought that might be a good way to pull together casual players. But in the end it depends on how many resources are available and how resources gathered in that area can be stored.
If everything worked right, it might work this way: an organization like the Carebear Corp (CC) works primarily in NPC zones. Members locate a resource that is in demand and they set up a camp and advertise the location in chat or by other means. Basically they get a mass of people gathering resources and defending against the resulting PvE encounters. Such camps might be semipermanent or the company might basically start a new camp every day or every weekend, it all depends on members' gaming schedules.
Materials gathered are sold to other companies for construction in the hinterlands - Ryan hints that settlements will need a boatload of resources. The CC would need to have some way to disburse funds to members after such sales. I'm thinking the company might also allow brand new players or other casuals to join the work effort, as a taste of large scale resource collection, and might need to be able to pay such people for their contributions (it depends on if the monster drops are sufficient reward). Such non-member workers can either be offered membership, or can be pointed towards companies/settlements that CC has dealt with.
Finally, there's always some company or settlement in the hinterlands that needs labor. CC might have some members who aren't interested in PvP, but who are willing to risk being killed on a job by a PC.
So at no point is the player loosing control of his character when compared to regular PvP (if regular PvP has an autoattack, then that's fine for a player in formation as well) and they are still fighting, moving, registering damage and making decisions as an individual. It's just that there is an indicator of what thier position and order are SUPPOSED to be, and if they follow that indicator they will partake of the group (formation) buff's and contribute some portion of thier skill to the strength of those buffs for everyone in the formation. They can still choose to do something different at any time (e.g. they aren't required to auto follow the formation orders) but if they do, they won't get the buffs and they won't contribute to the strength of the buffs. Whether it makes sense for them to follow the formation orders or do something else is a judgement call that is continualy made by each individual according to thier individual situations. MOST of the time it will probably be best overall to follow the formation orders and maintain unit cohesion but in the chaos of combat there will be frequent situations where the best thing for them and thier side is to ignore those orders and do something else as an individual.
I'd be fine with that implementation.
I'll note that part of the entire idea of a unit working together is that it presents a unified front. Without a unbroken front, the soldiers in the front rank can be attacked at greater than 1:1 odds. So whenever someone in the unit dies, the person in the rank behind him automatically moves up - and the PFO system should have that fellow's position target move up (and that soldier can choose not to close up the rank).
The same thing happens when someone disconnects - it doesn't matter if the soldier fell out from death, or heatstroke, or he went to his knees to look for a contact lens, the soldier in the rank behind moves up. And the same thing happens when 2 guys in the front rank make a tactical decision to leave the unit - when they are out of the unit for X heartbeats, the system says they're gone from the unit and the person in the rank behind them gets the signal to move up.
Once outside the unit to its front, there's no automatic method for the independent operators to get back inside the unit. It's a whole lot easier for people to automatically step up to fill a gap than to step backwards and create a gap - and units are normally loathe to create gaps in their frontage. The people in the unit are about 3'/1m apart, with weapons, armor, and shields taking up a lot of space. Either the commander needs to do something to open a gap so the outsiders can pass through the unit, or they need to run around the end of the unit. Reinforcements typically fall in at the rear of the unit or (maybe) to its left/shield side, depending on the commander's needs.
My dream set-up would be the player of a soldier in formation can see what's in front of him. He can see his damage bar, see enemies moving, etc. But the character is on autopilot, based on his skills and the unit commander's orders. The player has some sort of mini-game going on - keep this pointer inside this circle, press the green button when the yellow button lights up, whatever. The minigame is mostly to test that yes, it's a human player and he's paying attention and disciplined enough to keep at the minigame. Showing the fight on the screen is mostly to distract the player from the minigame.
When the character is hit, the minigame might get harder. At 50% health a pop-up could flash to the screen and says "You are badly hurt - do you drop from the formation?" If the character hits yes, unit strength is reduced by one, other characters get "People are breaking formation. Will you run and live or stay and die?". On the vent channel, the veterans curse the newbie for breaking and running, and the ten other green troops that chose the [run and live] side of the morale check.
I am still quite curious how much of an impact an individual in the unit can have if: 1) they're just not very good; 2) they're intentionally trying to be disruptive; or 3) they're disconnected.
1) Clumsy player. I think skill training is drill training for this kind of stuff. Consider a unit with 50 characters, each with 3 months of skill training time devoted to that unit's requirements. The characters don't need to drill together for 3 months in game, because they drilled for 3 months outside of the game (at the expense of a lot of possible adventurer skills).
The character is trained and in the fight. He responds to his commander's orders with muscle memory from long training. In fact, I'd suggest that your hypothetical physically disabled player should be able to serve as a soldier alongside Twitchy McTwitcherson and the players' reaction times shouldn't matter in the slightest.
2) Disruption. I don't think the character in formation should have much effect. If he was obviously disruptive in RL he'd die, permadeath, and the unit would continue on. If a character in formation doesn't meet the requirements of whatever minigame/positioning/whatever GW requires, he falls out of the unit. Unit strength is reduced by one.
3) Disconnection. Same - if a character in formation doesn't meet the requirements of whatever minigame/positioning/whatever GW requires, he falls out of the unit. Unit strength is reduced by one.
Many formation maneuvers rely on the certainty that everyone else will execute the proper action at the proper time. Polearm formations in particular require precise coordination to rapidly change facing.
While in the real world this is true down to the quickest measurement of time, in an MMO the heartbeat can be longer, since at the basic core of the mechanic is an abstraction. Latency driven grace periods are typical in the MMO space and to be expected in any combat scenario. If, as I believe Ryan might have hinted at, the Unit Formations work on a different and slower time signature than "regular" combat in solo PvP or dungeon crawls, I think that's fine.
Polearm formation are an excellent example. Imagine a block of pikemen with their pikes slanted to the west. The commander wants the soldiers to shift their focus to the north, a "simple" facing movement.
But it isn't a simple movement - like Decius hints, they needs to all lift their pikes from a slant to vertical - in unison so someone doesn't lift their pike into the one above it (it might actually be done in waves, so the rear-most ranks lift their pikes first). Once all the pikes are vertical, each soldier pivots in place. Once the unit is facing the right way, then they lower their pikes back to a slant, in unison (or by rank/file). Although it isn't simple, in a real unit, this can be done relatively quickly, faster than computer lag would allow if each command has to be issued and responded to, which I think is Gruffling's point.
In my opinion, the game needs to know that the soldiers in a unit are capable of working in unison and that they are all there, actual humans marching to their commander's order. It may expect them to have certain skills (basic infantry drill, advanced infantry drill, pike drill) trained. But we don't require a character outside of formation to actually thread his swordtip into his scabbard every time he puts the thing away. We also don't need to know the precise angle of pikeman #12's weapon when the commander changes the unit's facing. If pikeman #12 is playing from Australia and lagging, it shouldn't matter; the unit should still function.
Personally, in my minds eye I've seen the unit formations following a UI similar the dynamic warnings seen in The Secret World. Perhaps a circle or square on the ground, with indicators hinting at proper directionality or formation shapes. Commands from the Unit commander could follow a similar UI, or just Alert Messages on screen.
That's what I've been picturing - visual cues for the player to respond to: a place to stand, a direction to face, some action to be performed.
Moving and acting in formation (in RL) isn't just executing the commander's orders as quickly as possible. There are also cues and alignment from the persons to your sides and to your front. If you're out of alignment or out of step, you'll see and correct or you'll get bumped. PFO doesn't need to bombard the players with all of these cues in real time, lagging the systems with chaff. Give the player a target circle to maintain position, a target direction to face, etc.
On a lark (and in no small part due to the campaign I'm running in Ustalav), this post made me think of how it could be interesting if constant war over a hex changed its qualities, in a similar way to how the french country side changed circa 1916. Maybe too technically challenging to actually reduce the forests to shattered stumps and the ground to muddy trenches, but if the proliferation of the fallen's remnants (the husks of a monthlong campaign could stack thigh high) changed the quality and type of resources within.
It might depend on the type of activity. I don't think we'd see the ground churned up like it was in WWI with high explosive shells.
But if a hex were under siege for some time, a besieging force might clearcut local woods for fuel, timbers for seige engine, wood for sapping and mining, expedient fortifications to prevent sallies, etc.
Likewise, armies fighting in an area during a growing season would destroy some fraction of any grain crop, just trampling it when marching through, even before fireballs start flying. During harvest season, armies might deliberately forage in enemy fields to feed themselves at the enemies expense.
As for husks - you need to burn them (more forest gone) or bury them (a lot of work), or your clerics do nothing but cure disease. They (husks, not clerics) probably attract dark and cold things as well.
I don't think that the ring should control the center. Someone who wanted to make an enclave in the center shouldn't be absolutely prohibited. Consider the case in which a single-settlement nation is surrounded on four sides by one nation and two sides by another. If one of those two larger nations conquers the other, should the single settlement cease to exist?
The ring wouldn't control the internal hexes (read - own and pay upkeep on), but it could dominate them (read - control access to resources). It would be hard for any surrounded enclave or independent resource collection to get resources out to external markets if the encircling nation chose otherwise. My preference would be that such a geometry (the ring nation) should be legal, but not very efficient.
I want to like this idea - breaking the continuity of a nation should have some impact. Historically, some nations have been discontiguous (I was thinking Spain and the Netherlands, but Spain and its New World possessions also applies), but usually such nations splinter in time.
But our nations won't be run by autonomous royalty, loathe to share power with some other king. In many cases they'll be run by large on-line communities that have social ties. If such a group has 2 or more clusters of settlements that operate in sync like a nation, they may as well be recognized as a nation.
A ring of 12 settlement hexes surrounding 7 internal hexes - if that shape is arbitrarily not permitted by PFO, then there need to be in-game forces (carrots and sticks; settlement and nation upkeep costs) that discourage a large group from creating 12 independent but allied nations in the same configuration.
Ryan Dancey wrote:
I want the Settlements in a Player Nation to be contiguous to stop people from dominating huge swaths of land but only occupying a tiny portion of what they control.
If you limit it to contiguous, then could kingdoms still build rings of hexes and occupy the outside ring to control the hexes inside of the ring?
If there are some costs associated with settlements (these might need to be paid with coin or in kind or a mix of coin and kind), then some costs could be per-hex and some could be per-wilderness-hexside. Nations that try to control lots of territory with long strings of hexes could be much less efficient than nations with dense settlement:border ratios.
...But in the transition period, the "leader switch" so to speak, the squad should lose cohesion and be vulnerable, otherwise it could be an impenetrable weak link. It should be potentially as catastrophic as a tank dying in a raid--people can either fumble and wipe, or adjust to a new tank or rez the dead one and carry on. Killing the leader would then give the potential to route the squad, but skilled players could recover and rally.
I think the loss of a leader could have effects like this, but if no change to the plan is needed then the unit certainly has file closers or non-coms to keep things going even if the commander falls.
So if the unit is attacking an enemy's flank, and the commander falls, the unit keeps moving to attack. It can keep going, if moving or attacking, or keep holding if defending. The leader switch mostly impacts any changes to the current activity.
Targeting leaders of formations should be challenging, not just tab-tab-tab-tab "ah, found the leader, everyone target my targeted enemy".
Isn't that reason mainly advanced firearms?
That was my immediate thought; repeating rifles alone didn't stop mass formations, it took widespread use of machine guns.
say army A (using this formation system) is fighting army B (using a berserker style crash the boards method). Army A might get some decent bonuses before initial contact but if building into that and maintaining it takes more time than it takes for army B to just run up and cause chaos among army A by getting into the ranks (army B getting in the way of fancy formations and such) and just going all out it sort of defeats the purpose of the whole system.
Yup. Melee formations should give significant boosts to defense and maybe lesser boosts to offense. But they should be lethally deadly to skirmishers and mobs in a fight. One of their advantages is that they can get more bodies into a given space, while skirmishers using uncoordinated fighting techniques will impair their neighbors. Not sure how that can be modeled.
Missile formations should have the choice of firing very fast against mobs or formation targets (which is where the longbow's legendary rate of fire is from, not against point targets, iirc) or horrendous numbers of missiles against point targets, at a slower rate.
I'd think there could be two competing factors to this mass combat: mass and discipline. Mass is the number of people you can group together. Discipline is how they drill together; which will affect how fast the officers can change facing, move the formation, etc. With equal gear and discipline, mass will win. But having more people in a formation will not be helpful if the additional bodies aren't practiced; they'll slow down the unit and degrade its DPS.
When two formations clash, the people involved may see their health bars depleting - but if they break out of formation to save themselves, they'll screw up the discipline/tempo of the unit, making it less effective and they'll screw up the mass of the unit, so it does less damage. The most cohesive units will be those that have dependable players who come out for battles *and practice sessions* and will march and drill as their officers command with the dedication of a raiding guild.
I'd also like to point out that the ability to log off after getting a price on your head has all the same negative effects he seems to be worrying about. I'd really love to see all of our characters be in-world all the time, even after the player has logged off. That will prove far more effective in making characters accountable than will removing everyone's ability to Teleport - and it does it without punishing honest people.
Having all of the characters that are ever created remain in the world could make things a little cramped.
To solve the problem of criminals logging off to escape justice - in a high magic world we just need a summoning spell that can be cast within 20m of a criminal's log-off point to drag the character back into the waking world. It's magic, anything is possible. It should be possible for a criminal to get to shelter, but if they can disappear into the ether by logging off, they will. And they'll use an alt to determine when it's safe to return.
@LazarX - I frankly think that alignment will be a lot like faction points in other games, spread throughout the game experience. We'll do things to please some gods and avoid things that opposing gods want. In PFO we probably won't be able to please everyone all of the time; we'll pick a few factions (gods/alignments) and stick with them.
There are several proposals under discussion here: ... Fixed-point to any fixed point- each portal is linked to every other portal. This includes any system in which fixed-to-fixed portals have a small central hub, and what any sufficiently powerful system of player-created portals will be. Distances are smaller in ways that ate hard to calculate. This is the system used for silt striders and guild mages in Morrowind.
The fast-travel system described in the blog entry "Time is the fire in which we burn" works as fixed-point to any fixed-point. Just not instantaneous:
To engage in fast travel, you'll need to start at a defined location; you can't just be wandering in the wilderness. And you'll need to know the location of your destination. These locations are discoverable as you explore the world, and can be shared by members of social organizations as well. To initiate fast travel, you'll access the in-game map, find your destination, and select it.
Ya, I'm not a fan of direct theft. In a game without serious death penalties I fail to see what could possibly be a deterrent; if there is no deterrent and no defense I think it needs to be disallowed.
It's sort of like teleporting; in old D&D, teleporting blind could get your wizard killed by a misjump. If there is no serious death penalty, so what? Teleport blind and the worst that happens is you respawn somewhere safe - without baggage, of course. The lack of a hard death penalty can be a good thing - it lets us get back into the game quicker - but it might be the single biggest departure from the tabletop.
I mean, thinking back on my tabletop years... It would have been a drastically different game if we knew our characters could never die and never be imprisoned.
@Buri - I'd guess he was disagreeing with your paragraph where you said "... the problem with capitalistic societies where you have corporations trying to attract more and more customers which requires more and more simplification of things to appeal to broader customer bases..."
The video suggests that corporations making spaghetti sauce have been doing the reverse over the last 15-20 years (The video is from 2004, and Gladwell was talking about stuff that had happened in his past). Rather than simplifying things and giving us one choice of sauce, they have been giving us multiple sauces, each very different. And people aren't always sold by brand loyalty, or social pressures, or marketing. Prego upended and dominated the market by delivering what people really wanted - even if those people couldn't articulate it.
I think, from your statements about games above, that you understand it (the need for diverse alternatives), but your paragraph about capitalism and corporate behavior simplifying things and giving us bland alternatives is at odds with Gladwell's talk. But some corporations/industries also understand it.
Exactly. Nothing's modeled into game mechanics at this point.
If GW wants to foster social behavior, rather than anti-social behavior, then they have to design it in. One big difference between EvE and PFO is that in EvE, all "people" are PCs. In PFO, there will be PCs and there will be NPC commoners that act as a multiplier for a settlement's crafting/economic strength. I think that NPC behavior (and NPC reaction to player behavior) is an obvious tool in Ryan's toolbox.
NBSI is an out-of-game player stance, as far as I understand it. It wouldn't be recognized by the game software. But there will be any number of settlement laws and settings, and some of those will indicate "we are unfriendly and untrusting". Other settings will indicate "we are open to non-hostiles". Player/group reputation and chosen alignments can also serve to identify antisocial groupings.
But to foster social behavior - that is, to take NBSI down in the neighborhood of 50-70% - the game has to be built in such a way that open groups and social behavior is not at an obvious disadvantage to closed groups and anti-social behavior. The NPC economic multiplier can be a carrot and a stick.
NPCs are invisible because the demands of rendering dozens or hundreds of apprentice crafters, common laborers, idle layabouts, alewives, etc., etc. would hinder the game. In a perfect world where the MMO servers are driven by supercomputers, all of those folk would be there - and that is the sea that our characters are swimming in.
So how does a "not blue shoot it" settlement distinguish between an NPC laborer and a character passing as a NPC laborer? Logic says that a settlement that has draconian security measures in place will also be making it difficult for laborers to work there; their security will slow down the rate at which laborers can be cleared to work in the settlement. A settlement that has more open policies towards PCs will benefit because more NPCs can flow in with open policies.
I think "not blue shoot it" is one possible security stance for a settlement. I do not think it should be the only stance. I think it would be good if settlements have to balance themselves somewhere between the most efficient security and the most efficient productivity.
Do you seriously see "not blue shoot it" for 95% of settlements as a desirable result? If not what rationality do you think would make groups not turn to that when they have to soley count on NPC/Automated defenses to protect their banks?
A settlement on a "not blue shoot it" setting should be inefficient in attracting NPC commoners to help with all of the mundane harvesting, processing, and crafting.
The thief that is casing a target (or a spy that is casing a settlement's defenses) isn't walking around with an "Adventurer U" hoodie on. He's blending into the crowd, trying to look like one of the faceless invisible NPCs. Any settlement that is run as a police state should take a hit on their efficiency, because they aren't just turning away adventurers, they have to turn away anyone that might be an adventurer, working for an adventurer, might talk with an adventurer, etc.
V'rel Vusoryn wrote:
If Character specific I would like to see that if any interaction / contact is conducted between the two characters, then reputation should be affected accordingly. Affected in such a way as it would be as described in the blog as far as being affiliated with a person of low Reputation.
I'll add on to this. A player running two characters should play them separately; as my DM used to say, what's your first character's motivation for giving that +1 sword to your second character? Are you going to give Tim's character a +1 sword, too?
That's not really manageable in an MMO, but I'd like at a minimum that when characters interact with trade they have some alignment/reputation rub off. If my Paladin character gives a lot of gear to my Assassin character maybe his alignment and reputation should suffer.
To do anything of this nature, I think the game can't allow dropping items into piles anywhere. All items are in inventory, on corpses, or in building storage. Gear could be transferred through company or settlement storage, of course, but alignments of the characters would meet the group norm, and the group could boot a character with a really poor global reputation.
@Obakararuir - It might also depend on whether Player A and B belong to settlements (or companies) that at war or not, or if either is defending in her settlement hex, or if they are in wilderness/no-man's-land. Also, in the past GW hinted that assassination, murder, and killing are three different things: assassination being an evil act; murder being a criminal act; and killing being something that happens a lot.
I think that, like your /point example, many emotes could have some effect in the game. A /point could create a temporary marker, /sit or /rest can regen fatigue.
From my time in the military, I'd love it if some of the social undercurrents of Drill and Ceremony (D&C) could somehow be captured through emotes. A /bow could reinforce subservience to your settlement or nation leader, while a /salute does the same for a group or party leader (So if leaders have reputations, you might be making a recommendation/boosting their rep for a job well done). Various emotes like /scoff and /sneer could impact the relation/reputation between two characters as well. And the 12-year old who goes around /farting in town can quickly destroy his reputation with the NPC population.
While superficial roleplaying is kind of 'meh' for me, I'd like the mechanisms for social interactions, reputations, etc., to be more than columns of figures in a spreadsheet or table. If emotes or other in game actions could be useful, that would be great.
organization flows like this: individual --> party --> chartered company --> settlement --> player nation.
It's not one track. It's likely three tracks.
individual --> (party)
individual --> chartered company
individual --> settlement --> player nation
Parties, companies, and settlements are social structures made up of players. Companies don't join together to make settlements - the individuals in those companies join together to make settlements. Nations are social structures made up of settlements.
Yeah, I'd like it if players could use a good range of emotes* and their default talk was just in a bubble above them, or broadcast only locally. Chat channels for a hex or group could be wider, of course.
* A basic set of emotes at the start, and more emotes earned with select badges or from superior characteristics.
The difference between [an evil character] and a good character would be that the evil character would have no empathy toward anyone that gets hurt in the process...
Having a lack of empathy for others seems to be an occupational hazard of online activities. I'm thinking that it's likely that such evil may be much more common than good in PFO. We'll see how evil and good manifest, in time.
The two companies have different goals and values. But settlements are created by people, not by companies.
There seems nothing wrong with people from both companies looking at where their values are in agreement and making chartering a settlement based on that melding of the two value sets. The settlement can serve as the sponsor for both companies and possibly other small companies that share that melded/core value set. It can also have citizens that belong to none of the companies, if you want that.
@Forencith, aye, I don't think I've actually seen "the means justify the end" before this thread. I guess it feels un-western, after all. "The end justifies the means" is usually used in cases where someone has done something and the methods used were less than savory or less than honorable. So a saying to cover up transgressions by saying the end result matters more than sins it involved.
I think we all recognize that our real world moral codes don't correspond exactly to the one we will see in PFO. I think the are some things that we all know, like "the end justifies the means", but that's based on our slightly mismatched moral codes. I find it hard to write about this stuff; I keep bumping against weighted words and concepts that mean something in our system.
Maybe chaotics don't feel the need to justify every action to a bunch of judgmental/lawful neighbors, so they don't worry about either of the little sayings.
In case that sounds harsh, let me clarify. I think to some degree the "chaotic" alignments are most foreign to us in Western society. I think both of the sayings were produced by lawful/orderly Westerners to justify their behavior to society or associates.
I'm not sure that's correct. Assume a Paladin, faced with a group of 3 LG, 3 CG, 3 CE, 3 LE. If he kills 9 people he can say, "Everyone is LG now". Does that end justify the means?
I think maybe it's reversed; for a lawful, the means justify the end.
Or maybe they both apply to law. For the LG, the means justify the end, and for a lawful evil the end justify the means?
(GW: answer these questions to the satisfaction of all of us, and it will be a first in RPG history)
My only problem with the alignment system as is currently being proposed (or at least how I understand it) is the confusion between Lawful-Chaotic and Trustworthy-Untrustworthy. I do not think the two are identical. Gnomes and Elves as species tend toward Chaos, does that mean they should not be trusted? No, to me it means they tend to prefer not being girded by arbitrary laws such as those made by societies...
I agree. I think Law/Chaos has been a lingering point of confusion since the first RPGs were played. I've always thought Elves and Gnomes could be grouped with Chaos if the reasoning was simply that Humans couldn't understand their motives. Which would make sense if those races were only NPCs, but that isn't the case.
I'm not sure GW has the license or interest in renaming Law/Chaos, though.