The Dwarves of Forgeholm are trying to determine a fair value for our goods, whether they be raw, refined, or crafted, as well as our services. Services may cover many things, but include transporting materials (more on this later), escorting another player, gathering, guarding a tower, fighting an escalation or any other activity.
I'll list the first results of some testing below, but Sspitfire came up with a standard measure of the transport of goods of any type on the map, from one point to any other point. Hopefully he doesn't mind my sharing this standard measurement. His idea is "Copper Per Encumbrance Hex" or CPEH, or CPX, meaning the labor it takes to move one unit of encumbrance one hex should be valued at one copper piece. Or, moving 10 units 10 hexes worth 100 coppers, or hauling a full pack of 100 true iron ore (50 encumbrance) 20 hexes would be 1000 coppers, or 10 silver. It seems like a good standard measure to begin to use for calculations for transporting goods, cost of crafted goods when moving raw materials to an area with none of that resource type or simply moving refined or crafted goods to another site. Time is money!
So what's one hour worth? What should you pay another character to stand boring guard duty, or to watch a tower so it is not taken? To answer this you must know what that characters "Opportunity Cost" is, or, "How much could this character make is he/she were doing something else?"
The Dwarves of Forgeholm invite you to help us conduct a public experiment. Set a 60 minute timer, go out and do something (gathering, grinding, escalations) and when the 60 minutes is up stop what you are doing, list what you get and post it to this thread so we can all come up with a base value for an hour's labor.
He is my first result. A rogue started from day one, but with 45k unused XPs. Loose Warriors Shirt+0, 2 steel daggers +0, Hunter's Shortbow +0, mostly a gatherer:
Items on the left, estimated value to the right by total category, estimated total at the bottom. Debate the values as you see fit.
183 copper coins (183 coppers)
4 Bloodstone (105 coppers)
16 Pine Logs (340 coppers)
5 Animal Pelts (100 coppers)
38 Esoteric Essences (38 coppers)
3 Iron Ore (45 coppers)
5 Wool (20 coppers)
5 Buckthorn Berries (195 coppers)
3 Introductory Holy Symbols (20 coppers)
2 Steel Greatswords (70 coppers)
3 Lesser Tokens of Curing (38 coppers)
1 Blood Crystals (Animal) (60 coppers)
1 Unresearched Book Page (10 coppers)
Recipe: Golden Crystal +1 (200 coppers)...............Grand Total is 1424 coppers for one hour of work.
NOTE: I did not include the adjective on the items gathered (smooth, perfect, intact, true, etc), as that only changes the encumbrance, not the quality, per se.
This seems insanely high and I would not want to pay another player anywhere near that for guard duty for one hour, nor could I afford to do so at this early date. Coin will change in relative value as faucets are turned on, drains are patched into the game, and the economy gains velocity.
Greetings future Pathfinder! The Dwarves of Forgeholm bid you “Welcome!” and invite you to join us in building something big in the River Kingdoms!
Pathfinder Online is a game with a long time horizon, and planning for the future is critical to the success of any settlement, alliance, or Kingdom. The Dwarves of Forgeholm, and their friends of all races, invite you to join us as we build a successful settlement with the intention of expanding our presence and power in the hills of the River Kingdoms.
Settlement Construction! We Dwarves are a tight knit group that will defend Forgeholm and each other. Armor-smithing and weapon-smithing skills are being honed and the nearby hills are being mined for iron ore, silver, gold and lodestone. Great things are happening and you can be part of it! In the coming months we will be tasked with rebuilding our settlement from the ground up with resources from the local area. Skilled craftsmen and craftswomen will plan, design, and construct our keep, cathedral, fighter school, paladins’ temple and other buildings using our trained architects, carpenters and stonemasons. You could be one of these builders and make something great where there was once nothing.
Formation Combat! In the future large armies will be forming up to fight for riches, power and glory. Be a field marshal and direct masses of troops in formation combat, lead a skirmishing party to wreak havoc on enemy archers, or operate siege equipment and batter down the walls of enemy settlements. Individual heroes are needed as well to fight in glorious hand-to-hand combat, wield the power of arcane magic, heal troops in battle or assassinate enemy leaders.
Adventure! Soon we will begin exploring the mysterious caves and cavern complexes in and around the Echo Wood, seeking out powerful enemies and ancient treasure, and rumor has it there are riches beyond belief in the Emerald Spire, a very dangerous place to adventure and only for the brave, or foolhardy.
Diversity! Dwarves are known for their patience, toughness, craftsmanship and long-term planning, and are friends of the Elves and Humans, Gnomes and Halflings. (Orcs and half-orcs need not apply.) Many members of our settlement came for solitude, repentance, or redemption, but we all have the same goal; make Forgeholm great!
Come join us!
Here are a few things that come to mind that may help stimulate the economy (because it needs some help).
1) Drastically reduce the frequency of recipe drops, and change the loot tables so higher level drops do not occur at lower levels. I saw the level 20 recipe Guurzak got in loot, and while exciting, there is no reason a level 20 recipe should ever drop this early in the game, That is a major loot table fail and should be removed immediately. Also, level +1 recipes should be reasonably common, +2 very uncommon, and any +3 should be very rare indeed. What is happening is monsters are getting farmed badly so every settlement can remain independent producers of every crafting input of levels +1 thru +3 (in large part since trading in any reasonable volume is otherwise almost impossible). This independence, while admirable, is causing there to be no need to trade refined goods. Why invest the time in trading refined components when all we need to do is farm the hell out of nearby monsters so we get the ability to craft everything we need ourselves?
2) With a reduction of the current recipes dropping, GW should infuse the crafting with a wide variety of other recipes to still make some drops possible, just reducing the percent chance of a drop. Add many more shields (there should be at least 30-50 different types of shields when all is said and done, add tons of new tailoring, leatherworker, and metalsmithing recipes. Tailoring should include a large variety of capes and cloaks, role-play clothing, dresses, hats, gloves and all the things that go with heraldry. I know the pennants, banners, flags and tunics are not in yet, and they will be a while, but they should be planned for a future release. Leatherworkers could make sandals, boots, bags and backpacks, leatherwork and smith aprons, as well as supplies for the eventual release of the trade caravan animals, animal handling, and possibly mounts.
3) Push out wagons, carts and other trade caravan items that increase the encumbrance that can be moved at one time. Again, this might already be on the drawing board, but moving it up on the timetable may give the trade networks a boost and help fire up the sluggish economy.
4) Fix the auction house. You know what it needs. (I know, next patch or two.)
As playable areas of the map increase there are many hexes that are nothing but water. There has been discussiona bout docks and/or wharfs as PoIs, yielding fish for food, and other things like pearls, trade goods, herbs and essences.
In an early blog post called "Player-Created Buildings and Structures" (Feb. 29, 2012) Ryan wrote:
"We also envision the ability of characters to... erect docks which will permit watercraft access to rivers and lakes, and to build bridges to allow roads to span those rivers."
So, 2 1/2 years after this post I thought it would be fun to rehash some earlier comments and thoughts about waterborne adventuring in PFO.
There are several bodies of water in the River Kingdoms, mostly rivers, hence the name (<-- This is genius at work, if I do say so myself). But there are also a number of lakes as well, including Glow Water Lake, Silvershade Lake, and five (5) more that are unnamed (as far as I know). Plus, the West Sellen River which is regularly 4 to 5 hexes wide (4-5 miles. Now that's a big river!)
This gives GW and players plenty of opportunities to design (GW) and adventure in (players) waterborne areas, and eventually even underwater. We all know there are many creatures and races of humanoids that primarily live in the water, not to mention the additional opportunities for commerce and piracy.
In addition to normal water areas, small stream, natural ponds and settlement constructed millponds might be available. How awesome would it be to construct a working gristmill run by a water-powered paddle wheel. Or a sawmill operated by a paddle wheel turning the saw blade. Lots of possibilities there, and these constructs would require many different high end crafting skills to complete the project.
Swimming is another opportunity created by bodies of water. Of course swimming should be a trainable skill, and advance swimming skill would allow the character to hold their breath longer and swim faster, perhaps even carrying a burden under water or swimming with armor on. There are lots of opportunities for adventures in the water and the swimming skill would be the difference between success and failure in most of the underwater type adventure scenarios.
Docks being built give players an almost unlimited chance to explore the larger bodies of water by building different types of watercraft, and settlements adjacent to any of the larger bodies of water might even be able to field a small navy. Certainly as the playable game area expands this seems more and more likely. Time will tell but it is a great opportunity to look forward to.
Some of the different types of boats that might be available once docks and boatbuilding becomes available:
Canoe, rowboat, outrigger, barge (pole or horse drawn), fishing trawler, sloop, skiff, sailboat, ferry (pole or horse drawn), jon boat, dugout, punt, raft, fishing boat, coracle, junk, knarr
Schooner, longboat, corvette
Here is a really funny presentation about Dwarves everyone should see. It is a little vulgar, but then "The Dungeon Bastard" is talking about Dwarves!
Three reasons you want to play a Dwarf:
One - They are the self-propelled anti-tank guns of D&D!
Imagine a Klingon and a Wookie had sex with a fire hydrant. That's a Dwarf.
Two - Beer!
Three - Awesome names!
In an early development blog (Player-Created Buildings and Structures, Feb. 29, 2012) the creation and destruction of player built structures was discussed. It was mentioned near the end of the blog entry that interiors would not be in the early game due to the complexity of building design, art asset management and other issues such as character collision, lag, latency, and capacity. There is a cool looking Inn interior shot (Every Picture Tells a Story blog) which is what I hope to see in other buildings types. It looks great!
So, below is a list of some buildings and the ones I think are important to get interiors complete for character interactions in the earliest parts of the game, and many others that are not important to ever have interiors unless crowdforging dictates this be so. A number of these early structures will likely be outdoor facilities anyway so interacting with them will be done in the open (buildings like an early sawmill, or a small smithy would be under a small open booth with a roof and three walls).
Building interiors and their priorities
These are the crafting stations, and personally I think it would add a lot of flavor to show the gradually improving interiors as the building structure was upgraded allowing better crafts of each type.
Not Very Important
Not sure what other buildings will be in the game, but if they are only there so players have a user interface, they would fall into this category.
This has been discussed in the past, but I have not seen a very recent discussion, nor did I wish to necro a two-year old thread, so here are some thoughts on how auction houses and markets might work.
Settlement Auction House – This structure would be built within a settlement and would allow anyone to place sell orders for items on the auction house for anyone with access to that auction house to purchase. The sponsoring settlement could earn income in a number of ways based on what they choose to use as their income producing function (more on this below). This settlement auction house could also list buy orders where the buyer states what he/she wishes to purchase and deposits the cash in an escrow account so when a seller sees an item or commodity they have in surplus they could execute the order. The seller would have to have brought the goods to the auction house to be stored in the settlement warehouse, for a fee.
Settlement Flea Market – This type of market would consist of one building with numerous market stalls. Each market stall could be rented out by a character to sell their goods, and each week a flat fee would be charged by the settlement to the character no matter what the total sales would be. This shop has limited storage of goods, so a flea market stall could not sell 10,000 bushels of grain, but could sell armor, weapons, personal gear, some buffs, and commodities in limited quantity.
Wandering Merchants and Merchant Caravans – Traveling merchants and gypsy caravans could wander the playable area and sell a few items, or provide some limited low level training, or occasionally some higher level training if the specific NPC were known and could be sought out in dangerous areas. The caravans would plod along the main roads, going from one NPC town to another, and may, if practical, set up just outside of town to sell some limited goods, buy some limited goods (arms, armor, food, raw materials in very limited supply, whatever would be a realistic inventory for a small, nomadic tribe) and possibly provide limited training if alignment and reputation allowed.
These caravans and individuals might not be easily found, as some NPCs might have a lower reputation but still be available for training specific skill sets under specific circumstances. For example, a small witches coven might have a “Speak with the Dead” spell, and would not normally ever train another character, but if the right alignment and reputation individual approached and had a token item, perhaps a rare creature drop or quest item, for a fee (or trade for an amount of rare spell components) the witches would teach a spell (or a feat, as the situation dictates).
Individual Vendors – If player housing is ever implemented a character could hire a single vendor to sell goods from the house (as was done in Ultima Online, and it worked great). While there are obvious limitations on how many vendors could sell goods from one house (most likely only one) and there would be a limited supply of goods (a specialty merchant selling knives, swords, shields, reagents, etc.) this option might be of limited value to the seller, but would be a convenient additional alternative vendor option under the right circumstances.
Fees, taxes and commissions
To keep the economy going and to incentivize settlements to have some sort of auction house or market, settlements can charge a fee, tax, or commission on sales taking place in any hex that settlement controls. Here are some examples of how the fees might work:
In an auction market:
A seller wishes to sell a fine steel breastplate for 500 gold, and lists it on the AH for 500.
Listing fee (Changed!)– Seller pays the settlement a fee per breastplate sold. If the fee is 25 gold per item, each item is likely to have a higher average value than a small item (usually) or low value necessity. If the seller lists 10 items he/she would pay 250 gold to the settlement whether the items sold or not.
Transaction Fee – Similar to the above, but the seller can list as many breastplates for sale as they wish, and only pay the fee on the items sold.
Sales Tax – Seller posts the breastplate at a 500 gold buyout. If it sells at 500 buyout, the buyer pays 525, with 25 gold going to the settlement and the seller getting 500 gold.
Percent of Sales – A seller posts a variety of items of varying value, encumbrance and weight and the settlement charges a percent of the total sales of all items sold. Similar to a sales tax, but is aggregated at the time the seller cashes out his/her sales.
Combination – A settlement may charge a combination of the above fees or taxes to generate revenue based on the types of items normally sold at their market.
Storage fee – The settlement could charge a storage fee to the seller based on the value, encumbrance and/or weight or the merchandise to be sold. Using this mechanic may allow the seller to have an item for sale for a longer period of time as long as they were willing to pay the daily storage cost for the item. An example of this would be a wagon, a mount, or bulk goods, and may also require the settlement spend extra gold, DI and construction costs for a larger warehouse area adjacent to the auction house or market area.
Individuals control their own destiny, and can make their own decisions, so when an encounter between two individual players occurs, each can decide what they will do and suffer the consequences. Larger groups can’t unanimously make a decision, might not be online at the same time or agree on what course of action to take, so the larger the organization the longer amount of time it takes for a decision to go into effect.
Below is a proposed matrix of wait times for individual or organizational decisions to go into effect. Ideally each player could target another player, right click (or a similarly easy and intuitive mechanic) chose the option for “Diplomacy” and choose the option desired. For groups of company size or larger only the next step up or down would be visible since there is a wait time for the change to take effect. Company, settlement and kingdoms diplomatic menus would have options similar to individuals but the interface would be within the organizational menu in a settlement structure of Kingdom capital.
Only certain members of the groups can make the change in diplomatic status since these changes can bring on greater obligations for alliances, or greater risks for declarations of war. Also it would give members of both groups time to shift positions physically, to discuss matters of state with allies (and enemies if trying to negotiate a peace treaty, or for the threatening group to wring out concessions from the smaller group).
Finally, for settlement and Kingdom level diplomatic changes a character must be trained to certain levels in certain skills in order to make changes of larger impact. A low level diplomat is not able to declare a war between kingdoms; that responsibility is reserved for the most senior official. Therefore the aristocrat role should have skills that increase the settlement and kingdom level activities that effect interactions at that level.
The color codes in the below matrix are suggestions only, and do not take into account any exception for colorblindness. Critters, animals and neutral creatures would default to gray.
Allied-------Purple----Immediate---24 hours----48 hours-------72 hours
Helpful----Lavender---Immediate-----12 hours----24 hours-------48 hours
Friendly---Blue-------Immediate-----6 hours-----12 hours-------24 hours
Helpful----Green------Immediate-----3 hours-----6 hours--------12 hours
Neutral----White------Immediate-----90 minutes--3 hours--------6 hours
Wary-------Yellow-----Immediate-----3 hours-----6 hours--------12 hours
Unfriendly-Orange-----Immediate-----6 hours-----12 hours-------24 hours
Hostile----Rust-------Immediate-----12 hours----24 hours-------48 hours
War--------Red--------Immediate-----24 hours----48 hours-------72 hours
It occurs to me as we are discussing the structure of settlements, buildings that make up a settlement and the member companies that are part of the settlement (and eventually multiple settlements forming a kingdom), companies can do things that individual players cannot, and settlements can do things that companies cannot. But individuals will have a reputation system to encourage their cooperation regarding the alignment system, and companies will be encouraged to behave a certain way through the faction system.
What system will be in place to encourage settlements to do things like honor non-aggression pacts, peace treaties, mutual defense treaties, rights-of-passage agreements, ect? Sure, other settlements can go to war against the violator (just as factions can fight, and individuals can fight). But short of that, should settlements and kingdoms have a reputation system or alignment system (or even a security system like the one to be used by individuals)?
Andius presented an argument for settlement security statuses last year in this thread: Reputation at the Settlement Level
Planning for settlement design and role/crafting training and support means this system should get another look.
OK Ryan, this is where the money is!
I have played a lot of games, and there are many way companies manage accounts. Blizzard allows one account with up to 50 characters (limit of 10 on one realm), but you can only be logged in to one at a time, and play one at a time, and you only gain experience while you are actively participating in the world. (Most companies follow this model now.)
CCP allows three characters per account, but only the "active" character would be running it's training queue, but you could have as many accounts as you wanted and have them all playing at the same time (you called this "multiboxing").
Pathfinder Online will let any character you are paying a subscription fee for gain experience, even when not playing, and you advance your character by gaining feats and "cashing them in" at a trainer and for a few, some experience, and perhaps some other thing, you learn a new skill. (Terminology in flux I think.)
Not including the Destiny's Twin bonus feature (which I missed):
If I wanted to have three characters that are gaining experience, do I need three accounts?
Can I play all three at the same time? (Mining a node, or stealthing in place on guard duty, present at a facility as manager but otherwise inactive.)
Are you planning in allowing multiple windows to be active at one time, or must I Alt+Tab through my open windows?
If I can't pay for one character's experience gains for a month or two (budget crisis, changing jobs...) can I still play a character that is essentially stagnant? If so, must I still have an active subscription running?
Just curious. I am trying to plan my gaming budget and see how many characters I can realistically employ. (I had four accounts in EVE, nice to have my own little fleet.)
(Edit: Will I be able to leave my characters logged in all day until I can get back to them, or are you planning on having a logout timer? I vote let us stay logged in until server maintenance forces us out, but that is a server load question.)
An open letter to the following groups, and others who share the philosophy of the Dwarves:
The people of Forgeholm invite like minded settlers to consider joining Forgeholm as partners in craftsmanship, brotherhood and adventure! After a lengthy discussion amongst the members, it was decided the settlement of Forgeholm would be designated Lawful Neutral in order to facilitate the maximum amount of trade and trading partners, as we Dwarves, and our Dwarf friends, seek primarily to take hammer to anvil and craft the highest quality metalworks in the land. We will also field a worthy force to defend our holdings and our friends and allies, and keep the land safe while warding off evil. Noting the Lawful Neutral nature of the settlement itself, many if not most of us are of a good nature, with a noteworthy number being worshippers of the Mighty Torag. We do not abide evil or evil acts, so if you have leanings of that nature, you should look elsewhere. If you are of a good nature you would be welcome in our settlement as friends and partners.
We welcome most settlers, but we draw the line at orcs, half-orcs or worshippers of their foul deities. Outright evil folk need not apply as you will be rooted out and cast over the mountainside. If there is a need in the future to parley with half-orcs, we understand these folk are who they are and not of their own doing, so they will have a chance to state their business, but we shall not forget our past.
We expect everyone in Forgeholm to be well versed in martial skills, as the River Kingdoms can be unpredictable and we must be prepared for the unexpected (Torag is a strategist and planner, and as one of His servants I do not wish to disappoint Him). Therefore we will concentrate on crafting metal and stone, and training martial skills. Other skills will be trained in cooperation with our friends, partners and allies, and we will train on Forgeholm as possible.
If you wish more information please contact me, Fanndis Goldbraid, or our leader Lord of Elder Days (aka Gorim Goldhammer), Rudar Rockborn, Marlagram (aka Daklas) or Durin Steelforge (aka Giorgo).
Forgeholm welcomes you!
The Dwarves of Forgeholm have will make the finest arms and armor in the land...exquisite items of iron, steel, mithril and other exotic and rare metals. As we outfit ourselves, we will also take "orders of interest" from other crusaders in the River Kingdoms. It may take a bit of time to refine our craft, but there is no doubt Dwarven gear has been, is, and will be the best metalworks available outside of the Five Kings.
For those interested please send an "order of interest" to Fanndis (that's me), Lord of Elder Days (aka Gorim Goldhammer), Rudar Rockborn, or Marlagram (aka Daklas). Tier 1 gear should be plentiful, so we are taking bulk Tier 1 orders, as well as orders for metalwork Tier 2 arms and armor. Tier 3 will be far enough in the future we will push that out for at least six months or so, and see how things develop.
Tork Shaw wrote:
Here's a few possibilities:
Civic Support Structures
Other things to add later:
Maybe later "wonders" could be implemented for major DI bonuses, but they would require huge amounts of labor, resources, expertise, and gold.
In this thread I am not concerned with the real world technologies like Mumble and Team Speak. We know these will be used by groups to provide instant communications and tactical support to teams of adventurers and larger settlements. That’s fine. But it is an out of game technology. Here are some in game technologies that would be good to see added. I have grouped them into “Voluntary Comms” (horns, bells, whistles) and “Involuntary Comms” (footsteps, fires, combat).
Sometimes things happen in the River Kingdoms that we, as characters, should tell others about. People need help when attacked, settlements need to warn its residents of a crisis, or one settlement needs to warn another settlement of a strategic discovery. Since there will be many thousands of players from all over the world playing on one server, and these players speak many different languages, how might this be accomplished? Here are a few ideas:
Bulletin Boards in a Settlement – Messages may be posted someplace near the town center for all the citizens and visitors to read. These might be warnings of danger areas outside of the settlement, contract offers, wanted posters of bandits and villains, items for sale, groups looking for members, company recruiting posters. This bulletin board would be posted in a busy area of town and would have plenty of regular foot traffic as this would be a core way for residents to let each other know about this in their settlement.
Town Crier – Most settlements in civilized lands have a town crier, calling out the time (if no other method is available), shouting out warnings and news, and telling citizens about decisions made by the settlement leadership. (This feature might not be practical for the traditional town crier, as voiceover is expensive, but certain things could be standard and the town crier could be a settlement DI feature to add flavor to the settlement, bringing old world charm to the area.)
Carrier Pigeons/Ravens – The trusty carrier pigeon or raven can be used to send messages from one settlement to another. After a mission is completed these birds must be taken back to another settlement to repeated use, so their transport creates a need in game. It would also allow a note to be written in the language of the sender and read in the language of the reader so international communications may be achieved without out of game interpretation. If this is not practical, the text could be taken out of game for correct translation. (Here I would like to add that the ability to cut and paste text is very important when only one server is used, as an international audience needs to be able to translate text in languages other than their own.) Useful to warn other settlements of events, wars, and dangerous enemies/areas, or to conduct political negotiations.
Signal Fires – A system of signal fires might be used to communicate calls for help and assistance over distances to known friends and allies. This technique was used in “The Lord of the Rings” when Kingdom of Gondor needed the help of the Kingdom of Rohan in fighting the army of Mordor. Pippin lit the first fire in Minas Tirith and set the system in motion. Pippin lights the first Beacon of Gondor at Minas Tirith
Lighthouses – I don’t know where a lighthouse would be put in the River Kingdoms, but if there is a place, you can be sure the waters nearby will be dangerous. Lighthouses have long been used to warn passing ships of dangerous waters, and to tell the ships where they are relative to the coastline. Even the color of the signal can change is chemicals are added to the fire or colored glass is used to change the hue.
Drums of War – Drums have long been used to warn others of impending war. One of the methods settlements might use to warn its residents or to muster its troops is to have war drums at the ready.
Horns – Horns of various types have been used to ages to denote an event, proclaim a king, signal the troops, or welcome a dignitary with a royal fanfare.
Bells – Alarm bells call out a warning for fire, church bells ring for special events, and holiday bells jingle to denote a special season. All these could be used as crafted items and could become part of a settlement structure, or as a novelty item for in game special events.
Wands, Staves, Bindstones, and Beacons – Certain fantasy items have been used in books and movies to call for help or warn others of trouble, or to mark a spot on the shore, or to find another person in deep fog or smoke.
Bird calls, bird whistles, animal sounds – Many animal sounds have been used to communicate when in tactical situations, or to sound a warning. These are usually used in the wild when the real communications want to be masked by the sender. This type of communication could be a trained skill, and even subdivided into different skill sets.
Other types of communications include things like a campfire, monster speech and shouts, spell effects, monsters reacting to nearby aggressors, billowing smoke from a building fire, the sounds of combat, the sound of footsteps, or other animal sounds characters would hear while exploring in the wilderness.
(This topic was last discussed in depth in June 2012. Good time for a rehash since the alpha will start in a few months.)
Character names are an odd bird. I have a stable of character names I have used over the years, each having its own personality traits. I say "it" referring to the name only. Each of my characters also their own personality, and I can’t seem to deviate from that. If there is an area for it on my character sheet I will happily write a biography for each character I have in PFO. (Ryan and Co. Please put a page in the character sheet for a character biography.)
My characters all have suitable roleplaying names which have either been in tabletop campaigns from years past, other video games I have played, or current games I am playing. I have about 50 names I use for various occasions, depending on the situation...healers, paladins, priests, warriors. And yes, I even have a precious few I use for the dirty deeds category.
Keeping the above in mind, I was very happy to see every single person who tried Darkfall and joined the Goblin Squad clan had an excellent name selection, suitable for an RP scenario, non-vulgar, and it fit into the game world without redicule or banning. I was very proud of the PFO community’s name selection and am confident everyone who at least tried Darkfall will make a good name selection for Pathfinder Online when it roles out.
Sadly, many of the players in Darkfall, and countless other games, are not good character namers (in my opinion, but opinions vary). Ryan has said a few times name selection will be scrutinized and bad names will cause a name change, and truly egregious names that violate the spirit of the game, or violate the law in some way will be banned outright.
See blog entry “I Heard it Through the Grapevine” from September 12, 2012.
and blog thread for same HERE
For whatever race you choose there are options to help you find your character name. There are baby name lists that have alphabetical name lists, male and female names, name origins, names based on nationality, ethnic heritage, or fantasy mythos. There are name generators for historical periods, fantasy names, fantasy race names, science fiction names, names from books, movies, themes and other game systems. There should be no problems picking a suitable name for your Pathfinder Online character that fits the world, or the part of Golarion your character comes from, or even the race you have chosen.
In the blog “I Heard it Through the Grapevine” Ryan says this:
“...we'll have a robust name generator. If you choose to use the name generator, the name you get will be automatically approved. And if we have to change a generated name because something causes us to re-evaluate it, we'll work with you to get you a new name that is as close to your old one as possible.”
“We're going to have a very tough policy on bad names. We reserve the right, at any time, for any reason, to make you choose a new name.“
Recently Ryan wrote “I don't want a group of people to name their characters incredibly offensive things, and deluge the chat channels with abusive language, poking at people until they snap from anger or frustration.”
All that is good. Here, I will make a suggestion to the community at large.
Choose your names carefully. The alpha is coming up soon, and if you have not done so already (I am sure most of the regular posters have) choose a good name, a non-offensive name, a name that fits with the world of Pathfinder Online. Names add a lot to the community, and they can take a lot away. Finally, try to avoid some of the pitfalls you and I see in many, many other games. Avoid naming your character for a known celebrity (we have Joe Pesci and Robert DeNiro running around in Darkfall), don’t use honorifics (King, Queen, Lord, Duke, Prince) as there may be some sort of event in game that applies a title or bestows an honor and those titles are otherwise earned through deeds. (There is an argument the title is “earned through blood” as part of the character’s biography, but is does not help immersion.) Generally, pick a name you want to live with for 10 years or more. Most of us here are hoping against hope PFO is around at least as long as WoW or EVE, and we want to have fun experiences that we can remember fondly. Our characters will be part of that personal gaming history.
In case fans of Sandbox MMOs have not noticed, there are a lot of Sandbox MMO’s on the horizon, and many of them have some very innovative ideas out there. In fact Pathfinder Online has some stiff competition on two upcoming MMOs that are in the early stages. One is in it’s Kickstarter now and the other has a Kickstarter (may be on a different fund raising platform) in the very near future.
The first one is “Trials of Ascension” whose Kickstarter began on October 23rd. It has Permadeath (100 death counters), no minimap, no fast travel, alternate playable races. So far a spider race called the “Raknar” has been unlocked, but other possibilities include Gryphons, Dopplegangers, Pixies and Dragons. They have a nicely designed website and with lots of detailed information and are hitting the PR scene pretty hard right now.
The other contender is “Life is Feudal” featuring full, unlimited terraforming, free building (skill based) which can be destroyed, local banking only, full PvP and looting (will surely scare of any casuals), realistic combat physics and body damage featuring organ and bone damage, also requiring detailed doctoring skills to heal and cure such wounds, and open territorial control. The game also has a nice website that has links to several videos and lots of detailed information on skills and features.
Goblinworks has an awesome blog. I am there every two weeks to read the latest blog and comment on these forums which I have been doing almost a year now (and I was late to the party). But GW’s website needs some webmaster love to show the cool stuff Pathfinder Online has to offer. You are getting trumped by new competition and these games also have alphas that are supposed to be starting pretty soon (in 2014 if they remain on schedule).
Get someone on website design and drop some of the “Work in Progress” on there, show us a few videos, list some prospective skills, some fancy screenshots. Announce some of the unique features of PFO to get other gamers who might not have heard of PFO excited to play. Gain more followers and get some fresh blood on these forums. You may be doing this already in preparation for the long awaited “Fulfillment Period”, but you have some stiff competition right behind you!
All of us have played games that awarded achievements for doing certain things, finding places, reaching new heights or crafting new items.
In World of Warcraft the Achievement System drives what a log of guilds do for repeat runs in Raids (seems unfun to me repeating the same ol’ same ol’, but many of my old guildmates loved raiding the WoW way). Darkfall uses advertised “Feats” to award “prowess” (the currency used to purchase skills)...complete a task, get prowess. Get prowess, buy skills.
In PFO here are some of the things that could award “Achievement Points” or “Merit Badges” or whatever Goblinworks wants to call the reward for meeting certain milestones/benchmarks with the game. Some are in crafting, some in exploration, some for combat, some might be for sieging. Others still may be for completing partial or complete blocks of skills that, put together, represent the larger “Class Completion” achievement, which if the current schedule is followed will take about 2 ½ years to complete.
Achievements can also be on different organizational levels. Of course there will be individual character achievements at the core of any achievement system, but there could also be achievements at the company level, settlement level, within a faction, and in a Kingdom.
Some examples of achievement levels and categories:
Exploration (sites visited - ruins, NPC locations ‘i.e. inns, taverns, cities, villages and hamlets’, peaks and passes, graveyards, bind points, scenic overlooks, cave entrances, waterfalls, bridges)
Items found (treasure chests, tool boxes, armor racks, books, caches, keystones and cornerstones ‘engraved stones providing some lore for buildings and ruins’)
Gathering (number of units, variety of resources, all in a category, 100, 200,and 300 first gathers for player)
(Use your imagination for the following categories)
Link to previous discussion on same topic: A question to the Devs About In game currency
As this time the in game currency for Pathfinder Online is expected to be called “coin” (with no encumbrance, weight or mass) and will reside in a character account with transactions occurring automatically when sales and purchases are made. This system is easy to control and monitor for Goblinworks so the “faucets and drains” can be tweaked when necessary (i.e. Too much coin in the world? Turn off the faucets and open the drains! Too little? Turn on the faucets and plug the drains!) That’s fine from a developer standpoint, but it is problematic from a player perspective. Even if it is a secondary currency system, please consider allowing the various kingdoms, nations and settlements to mint their own coinage in Pathfinder Online!
The reason this ghost of a previous thread is getting rehashed is the last blog discussing gathering, harvesting, farming, extraction and other elements of resource accumulation and use. The more I think about “coin” being the default currency type in PFO the less I like it (I know, I am not the guy programming the economic system, opening and closing the faucets and drains, etc… but carrying a non-thing really bugs me.)
Throughout history kingdoms, countries and nations have minted their own currencies for various reasons. Some of these reasons include:
-Establishing and maintaining sovereignty
Typical fantasy game coinage includes coppers, silver pieces, gold coins or ingots, and platinum coins. Other items often used as currencies include jewelry made of precious metals and some gemstones. (These last items more often fall into a barter system, but can be used as a currency if their values are standardized.)
It might take a few innovative systems created by the game designers to implement coinage systems (currency systems may or may not be implemented later), but having a system in game allowing precious metals to be mined, transported, refined, minted, stored in treasury and issued when needed by the legal authorities (or counterfeiters).
Entire industries and skill sets could be realized if a Kingdom’s army is sent out to survey mining sites to find a precious metal node (or many nodes!), mine the site, defend the site, caravan the ore to a smelter (or smelt in on site), design the coinage, mint the actual coins, distribute the coinage, and manage the entire system! There are many possibilities and every player Kingdom would have a different set up.
In the event no minting and coinage system is designed by Goblinworks, players will create their own barter system, assigning values to items based on supply and demand, taking away much of the intelligence valued Goblinworks hopes to maintain by using the “coin” system. (Goblinworks would be able to tell what the ins and outs of “coin”, as well as who has what and how much “coin” is idle, but that data would lose its value.)
I want coins jingling in my coin purse! Make it so!
At Open Enrollment many, many new players will burst onto the scene and enter the River Kingdoms. Many settlements will be vying for their attention and allegiance. Only a few of the mass of new players will hit the mark on the first try and choose a settlement that fulfills their needs. But what are those needs?
Here are a few things I think might be important to consider when players decide where to set up shop:
Is this settlement going to be safe? Can I pursue the type of play style I want to, relatively free from the threat of constant attack?
How much input will I have in decisions of the settlement leadership and management?
How are Points of Interest, Outposts (new topic) and other resources going to be divided up? Will leadership play favorites and only assign these to their friends? Will there be a lottery, a vote? If a vote, what sort of voting system will be put in place to handle these decisions?
Are the other companies attracted to this settlement going to compliment my play style, or oppose it?
Am I going to be directed what to do, or will the settlement leadership give me choices in tasks, careers, and activities?
How quickly will settlement leadership be able to take a new issue (let’s say it’s a hot issue that needs a decision pretty quickly), hash out the options and make a decision? Is leadership going to be decisive, or will there be disagreements that will cause a delay in execution of the decision?
Does this settlement have, or might it have, policies that I strongly disagree with?
Is the focus of this settlement aligned with the things I want it to focus on?
The Deepforge Company is committed to creating the highest quality crafted works of stone and iron available in the River Kingdoms. In order to generate a vigorous discussion about the crafting systems it seemed like a good time to post some points for discussion regarding the crafting system and what we should expect (and what we all hope it to be).
Being a master of any skill should take a long time. Most people following a craft never become a master of anything. Most never try, many that do try are decent, some are good, a few become very skilled, a rare number professional, and one a small handful ever become a master. It matters not what the skill is. History shows true masters are counted on one hand, no matter the skill, all throughout time. So becoming a master of anything should be a supreme achievement only the most dedicated (and perhaps lucky) few can ever hope for.
Most people (and gamers) think mastery is for crafting only, but the same goes for gathering skills, refining skills, management skills. Personally I envisage every skill set having a mastery level that is the penultimate of that skill that over a ten year period only a select few players would ever achieve. It would make the mastery as rare as it should be, the items produced by masters as rare as expected in a world of mundane items, and the truly legendary creations, inventions, and incantations a wonder to behold.
Starting at the most basic level is the gathering and harvesting of items. Since the Deepforge Company is focusing on stone and iron, let’s back up a little and narrow our focus to the task of acquiring mined raw materials.
Many things can be mined. Since we do not yet know the complete list of raw materials that will be mined in PFO, here is a list of possible mined resources:
Ores – iron, copper, tin, mithril, adamantite, other magical ores.
Precious metals – silver, gold, platinum, other rare precious metals.
Gemstones - opal, tanzanite, topaz, zircon, citrine, peridot, lapis lazuli, jacinth, sapphire, turquoise, pearl, jade, quartz, garnet, moonstone, amethyst, tourmaline, onyx, emerald, ruby, diamond, aquamarine, coral, beryl (to name but a few).
Other minerals – salt, silica, coal, cobalt, feldspar, lead, manganese, mica, nickel, potash, pyrite, quartz, sodium carbonate, sulphur, saltpetre (potassium nitrate), zinc.
Many skills may lend themselves to better, faster, safer, and more efficient mining. It also makes sense for dedicated miners working together as a group to have higher yields through the use of better equipment, more experience, the assistance of trained animals, and if or more of the miners is an experienced mining manager his expertise would “rub off” on all the other miners working that mine and their yields would all go up together as long as they are in the same party.
Here are some of the possible skills that could be found in a possible “Mining Skill Tree”:
Apprentice Mining – The ability to swing a mining pick or pick axe. This is an entry level skill that anyone can learn, but the skill level is an absolute minimum. Only basic ores or metals may be mined at this level. Every miner must start here but this skill need only be learned once.
Journeyman Mining – A slightly more advanced mining knowledge which is only trainable after a certain amount of mining experience has been gained. Slightly more ores, metals and gemstones are mineable at this level. (Unknown at this time if experience will be determined by units mined, hours spent mining, attempts at mining whether successful or not). This skill need only be learned once.
Advanced Journeyman Mining – Most ores, metals and gemstones may be mined at this level, but extensive mining experience must be had in order to learn this skill. This skill need only be learned once. This is the highest level mining skill available to a casual miner, as higher levels of mining skill are specializations. Maximizing this skill allows a miner to mine items of quality level 100. This skill must be completed in order to qualify to learn a specialization.
Chosen Specialization Mining – Extensive mining experience must be had to learn a mining specialization. Any of the categories of ores, precious metals or gems may be chosen as a specialization, but only that category may proceed to learn the “Advanced Chosen Specialization” skill. For example, if a miner that had learned “Advanced Journeyman Mining” chose gemstones as a specialization (which Gnomes are known to favor) our Gnome friend could learn “Gemstone Mining Specialization” and advance in gemstone mining, but would have to learn “Ore Mining Specialization” to further in ore mining. Same goes for metals mining. Therefore, there are total of three basic specializations may be learned.
Advanced Chosen Specialization – This skill may only be learned as a subsequent skill to the chosen specialization as noted above after a significant amount of gemstone mining has been completed. In our example our Gnome gemstone miner could learn “Advanced Gemstone Mining” after some experience as a Gemstone Mining Specialist. This skill must be learned to advance to the “Master Gemstone Mining”.
Master Chosen Specialization – A prodigious amount of gemstone mining experience must be had for our Gnome miner to learn this skill. This skill is the prerequisite skill to know in order to advance to a specific type of gemstone mining. Maximizing this skill would allow a gemstone miner to mine gemstones of level 200 quality. To begin to mine gemstones of a higher quality level the specific gemstone specialization must be learned as noted below.
Specific Type Specialization – This skill is the beginning of the final tier of specialization. In our example of a Gnomish gemstone miner, he is trying to obtain the rarest of the rare of rubies in the known world for wizard to enchant for a powerful artifact. In order to advance our friend must learn “Ruby Mining Specialization”. This skill level allows the mining of rubies of quality level 201 through (approximately) 240. This skill is a prerequisite to learn “Advanced Ruby Mining Specialization”.
Advanced Specific Type Specialization – We have almost reached the maximum skill of ruby mining here. Learning this skill allows our miner to mine rubies of quality level 241 through (approximately) level 280. This skill is a prerequisite to learn “Advanced Ruby Mining Specialization”. The rubies mined at this level are extremely fine and are sought after by jewelers, enchanters and crafters all over Golarion. These gemstones are among the finest ever seen.
Master Specific Type Specialization – The final tier of ruby mining is “Master Ruby Mining Specialization”. Rubies mined at this skill level may yield rubies of quality level 281 through 300, the ultimate gemstone. Only at the 300 level can rubies be used to create artifacts or hold the most powerful enchantments from the most powerful and masterful enchanters in the world. These rubies are clearly the best, and may have naturally have some magical properties due to their natural brilliance and purity. Their very creation may have been caused from a momentous magical event in distant past, thereby endowing the gemstone with its inherent properties.
This skill system appears to mesh well with the stated quality levels mentioned in previous crafting blogs, and would provide a skill system that would gradually advance our miner through the increasingly demanding requirements of mining gemstones (or any other minable ore or metal). Other crafting leveling systems would follow a similar pattern, but only the most dedicated few miners would ever reach the ultimate skill level required for such a find!
I can’t discuss the coding part of this issue, but I will mention a few things that may make it a meaningful skill to possess. I did attend S.E.R.E. training back in 1987 and learned some nifty skills that could be useful in the River Kingdoms.
A good tracker can follow his/her prey by using prints (footprints, hoof prints, or any other type of treads or tracks), creature droppings, trails (such as animal runs, or the frequent path animals take to the nearest water source), broken twigs, depressed grasses, food waste, camp sites and cold campfires and the sounds and smells of the prey. Additionally some supernatural tracking skills may be possible depending on how hard it would be to implement in game such as the spells “Stone Speak”, “Commune with Nature”, “Speak with Animals” or in some cases “Speak with the Dead”. Also, a character may be able to scry using a spell or a crystal ball if implemented.
When characters move throughout the landscape a trail is left behind. In many games this feature is already included when moving through snow or mud. The residual trail usually only lasts about 20 seconds, but that time could be extended for hours or even days depending on the weather, condition of the landscape crossed, the prey’s ability to mask or cover their trail, and the type of ground covered (it would be far more difficult to track a creature or humanoid over rocks in dry weather than through wet sand or soft or muddy soil).
Skills/spells to consider:
Tracking (several levels of expertise)
Cover trail (several levels of expertise)
There have been several threads discussing crafting, but not as many focusing on the advantages and disadvantages of each method and how to keep the function interesting for the player.
Individual nodes should be an easy pick for a single item, maybe two, rarely three. It only takes a moment and shouldn't need a game or any distraction to complete.
A longer term individual gathering function that might yield a higher number of units, say, 5-50 units, can be pretty boring and repetitive ala Darkfall. Darkfall has nodes that when full yield 51 units which takes between 7 1/2 to 9 minutes to deplete. (They are replenished three hours after the last unit is harvested.) This system needs some help, as it is easy to become bored during the harvest and it is easy to walk away and get ganked while afk.
Refining is typically done standing in front of the initial refining station (say, a sawmill for timber) and multiple units may be processed in one sitting but can take several minutes or longer to complete a session. On the upside you can issue the order and normally go afk for a while as he operation completes. If the player wants to play then this system is a negative.
Crafting is also typically done standing in front of the crafting station (in the timber example we would now be in front of a workbench or saw table). These operations in past games are done quickly. Far too quickly in my personal opinion. In most games crafters level far faster than their capacity to craft like-level items. Slower leveling theoretically would align the character level with the item level created.
So, the question is, what do you do while your character is performing the above actions?
It does seems like a good idea to see how some of the mechanics work in a settlement, conquest, and player conflict setting. At Ryan's prompting we have started off (been a week now) and have 17 (maybe 18?) members of the Goblin Squad! (We be Goblins! You be food!)
Let's discuss goal setting! Keep in mind this should be considered a learning experience and we are not really expecting to have a lasting impact on the game world of Agon. We are (unless I badly misunderstand the intent) in Darkfall as a group to learn the mechanics or a PvP world where players will kill and be killed, settlements created and destroyed, alliances made and broken, and kingdoms formed and abolished.
In that vein, I though some goals would be a good idea. These are not the "Let's get 100,000 gold in the bank" goals. These should be "What do we want to accomplish before PFO EE begins" type goals. They can include shorter term Darkfall goals, but should be aligned towards a 12 month "maximum" timeframe when EE should be getting close (Woohoo!). Let's shoot for 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months. OK, I'll start...
-Membership offers presented to many other PFO posting groups and members of the Land Rush Poll to get maximum participation from PFO users. Hoping for 50+ members by end of September
-a council formed of members of the Goblin Squad so issues can be discussed and "best practices" noted
-Some potential alliances proposed
-Most of the world map explored and likely sites chosen for a Goblin Squad settlement
-All clan members are working towards settlement creation
-Some siege attacks and defenses should have occurred before now so we get an idea of group combat
-Tear down and departure plan underway. We don't want to abandon any allies made once we begin to go to PFO. Allies should understand the timeframe and not be surprised by the departure of Goblins and the Goblin Squad. After all, the Goblins aren't going away, they are just relocating to the River Kingdoms! (And Ryan wants us all as customers!)
Got the funds to create a clan, thanks to those in the Dwarf lands! Thanks Kodakhan Hammerhand, Urman Urmanson, Gaskon Silverpate, Pino Bloodaxe, and Lucas Silvertusk.
Now we need a motto (100 characters) and charter (200 characters). Taking any suggestions.
Motto (100 characters) Need some help here.....
Proposed Charter (187 characters)
A band of goblins united in preparation for an invasion of the River Kingdoms! Only as an organized goblin clan can we prepare to hone the skills needed for survival. Goblin Squad Unite!
Part of the settlement mechanics is the “Development Index”, or DI. As your settlement grows, your DI goes up/gets larger, allowing a settlement to “spend” more DI for bigger and better structures. Only at the highest levels will settlements ever see the highest level structures and training facilities.
Many years ago I did a lot of “Play-by-Mail” gaming. One of the games was called “War Council” (I want to give credit where credit is due) and the “King” (the player) chose five members of his war council, each with different abilities and benefits. One of the council members was an engineer (City Engineer)( who could build things like sewer systems, street improvements, improved city design features like statues and traffic circles, parks, etc.
If one of the skill specializations a player can focus on is “City Engineer” this specialist could actually add to the DI for a settlement by spending time, money and resources to implement city improvements. Streets could be improved from muddy paths to cobblestone avenues. A sewer system could be added to a city to improve sanitation and reduce disease and increase the population capacity. Parks could be added to increase open space for city events and public functions.
Instead of everything taking away from the settlement’s DI, I thought I’d throw this out there as an option to actually increase DI, at a cost.
There are many things that could be included in PFO for flavor that would make the game so much more interesting. I’ll list a few examples, but understand these things may be low priority. Still, many of these may be worth considering putting in a future crowdforging poll. Here are a few:
-NPCs that walk around town, do routine chores, are seen working in the fields (as part of the resource harvesting system), or those that do things like pray in the temple, go to the well, sweep the street and other things player characters are not likely to do.
-Creatures in town and out in the wilderness. Birds, insects, and wild creatures in the woods. These couldbe used as part of the tracking system to be used by Rangers or any other player character that may track animals. Animal tracks, droppings, other animals corpses that were food, broken twigs and bent grass. I am sure there would be a lot of computer power sustaining a trail of animal prints or droppings in the wild that a player character may never see, but it is a thought for the future.
-Player character illness (from spells, poisons, curses, etc) and scars of battle and accidents. Sadly every game has toons that are created early on, but never change. I would be nice to see scars appear over time, hair color to change with age (if enough time elapses), or any other event that may change the character’s avatar somehow be incorporated into the portrait of the character.
-Items that add ambience to town and country such as weather (especially weather that means something and has effects), puddles in town and muddy streets with muddy footprints, rain barrels, leaky roofs. In the countryside there should be dead trees, dead animals, meaningful weather (as mentioned), wonderful vistas, birds and insects….
What things would you like to see that add ambience to the game?
In a separate thread I mentioned how items purchased in cash shops can lead to in-game inflation. A carefully run and controlled shop might be able to contain inflation, but normally only if the cash shop itmes do not integrate directly with the "normal" in-game economy and currency. Once players can trade in-game currency (gold, ISK, or whatever it is) for cash shop currencies (Gems, PLEX or whatever type THAT is) imbalances occur. Here's an example (open for discussion so the other thread isn't totally wrecked):
Here's an example using GW2's Gems from their Cash Shop (the values are just examples so the math is clear). Player A spends his first week questing hard for 100 hours and earns 1000 gold. He does not use the cash shop so ends the week with 1000 gold. In the same week Player B buys (from GW2's store) 100 Gems for $10. Then quests hard for 100 hours and earns 1000 gold. Player B puts his Gems on the market and sells them to Player A for 500 gold. At the end of week one Player A has 500 gold and 100 Gems. Player B has 1500 gold. So, Player A expended 100 hours of work, has 500 gold (5 gold per hour of work) plus 100 Gems of unknown value (their value will vary). Player B has expended 100 hours of work and has 1500 gold (15 gold per hour of work). Player B has three times the gold and can bid up desirable items, crafting materials or anything else he/she wants to control, while (more often than not) inflating the price due to his/her additional wealth. NOTE: Buying the Gems might pay off in the long run, as their value often increases significantly over time.
While Player A could have kept his 500 gold, players willing and able to dish out cash at the cash shop will find buyers, accumulate additional wealth, and tilt the economy towards inflation. Game developers want, and usually need the cash inflow, but reckless cash shop management can totally wreck an in-game economy from developers' "cash grab" mentality (you have seen them in action, and that is where the complaints of the "Buy to Win" cash shops originate), even though the might think they have not changed the economy. (Many developers like to think they can control inflation by the "faucet and drain" theory of in-game currencies, but those currencies can become warped by the intrusion of outside influences...namely cash shop items resellable for other types of in-game currencies.
Copied from DM Fiat post:
Linked at DM Fiat interview with Ryan
2:17 – Ryan Dancey (RD) discusses the possibility of expanding the game world beyond the River Kingdoms.
4:37 – Both individually created hexes and hex templates will be used to create setting.
14:43 – RD elaborates on the class system and why Archetypes are more flexible than traditional Classes.
10:33 – Settlements are like guilds, but with physical locations in game. Player characters will have the ability to run different parts of a settlement, controlling it’s look and composition.
18:44 – In the future, players will be able to create their own adventure module style PVE content that they can supply or sell to other players for a profit.
Some cash shops are well designed. Many are not. In my opinion anything that can be done or created in game should not be sold in a cash shop, as these things would undermine the in-game crafting conducted by players. The blog mentions some things such as mounts, clothing items, and building decorations, but all those items seem like things that should be craftable by players and therefore should not be in the cash shop. Goblinworks wants (and needs) to make some cash on the cash shop items (it IS a cash shop, after all) so here are a few examples for a potential Pathfinder Online Cash Shop (some items already mentioned in other threads):
Theme park dungeon adventures (mentioned in blog) Either made by the game designers or from a player made (but designer vetted) dungeon creation system. Instanced dungeon adventures that could be activated once the party is formed. Loot would be modest and not unbalancing. The higher level and/or more advanced instanced dungeons would be somewhat more expensive. Difficulty would be determined based on the owner’s experience. Single use.
Playing a monster boss for a week Players could pay cash to be able to assume the role of a monster boss with a contingent of followers and a lair of some sort for say, one week. During that week the player, as a monster boss, would have five days to muster as much defense as possible with the full expectation that his/her doom is near since the appearance of a new lair would be posted in nearby settlements. After the five days, a “Wanted” poster would appear in Settlements to leads adventurers to the lair to rid the land of the creatures and their boss. The party would be able to loot the boss treasure. First boss role minor, and would increase in power the more often this feature were activated.
Pipesmoke Battle Set Players who activate this event can challenge another player with the same item to a battle of different smoke ring apparations. Once engaged, players would smoke a pipe and the smoke would form into a preselected icon which would then seek out the opponents smoke item. (Players can choose from a variety of pipesmoke creations, and when blown out goes towards the opposing smoke ring to fight it out.) Lasts 15 minutes.
Nature's Friend Players could card summon a creature of nature to keep them company for a short while. Summon a colorful songbird to sing on top of your hat, or sit on your shoulder, or a squirrel who follows at your heels and lets you feed him seeds if you sit down. Creatures not targetable or attackable. Only usable outdoors. Lasts 15 minutes. (Would be very prestigious for Druids, Rangers, Elves.)
Shadow Dancer When activated your shadow dances on its own. Depending on the dance moves available to players the shadow would dance for a period of 15 minutes. The more dances the players learns the more that become available to the shadow dancer.
Ridiculously Shaped Beard This item would give the player a ridiculously shaped beard that would grow into odd shapes and ridiculous lengths for 15 minutes. The ridiculous beard is encouraged to become even more ridiculous when the player is inebriated, and the more inebriated the more ridiculous the beard becomes. Usable by females characters too!
Dive Bombing Pigeon Activating this item creates a swooping pigeon to drop a gooey blob of goo another player or NPC. Surprise a player with a big, splattering poop from a friendly pigeon. They won't know what hit 'em! Some poops are colorful, some are white, and all are disgusting, yet harmless. Poop fades in 15 minutes.
Portable Trash Pile This item creates a temporary but disgusting large pile of trash and debris crawling with vermin. Place the pile in a city location to get a reaction from the crowd, the more crowded the better. Or place in a competing Inn's Common Room to embarrass the owner. Lasts 15 minutes.
Ancient Item Activate this item player can target an item to make it appear either extremely old or very fragile. Places an illusion on an item of theirs (or another player) to appear as though it came from a time in the distant past. Could either be an interesting look of lore or mystery, or make a perfectly new item look as though it is about to fall apart. Purely cosmetic, but fun to boggle others. Lasts 15 minutes.
Trail of leaves or feathers Activating this item leaves a trail of colorful leaves or feathers in the players wake. Usable indoors or outdoors. Lasts 15 minutes.
Curse of Belching and Farting Activate this targetable item and cause the player to randomly belch or fart loudly. All sorts of belches and farts might suddenly spring forth from the target. Not a big deal in a tavern full of drunken revelers, but great fun in a formal setting such as an audience with nobility or in the heat of battle!
Add more things you want to see in the PFO Cash Shop!
I look forward to one of my two mains being a cleric, a Lawful Good worshipper of Torag. Iomedae will be sufficient until Torag can be properly worshipped in the uncivilized lands of the River Kingdoms. I remain hopeful the many tasks of daily life in the church or temple are to be part of Pathfinder. Even though this list is targeted towards a good, specifically a lawful good cleric, the opposide may be available as well for evil aligned clerics. Here are the things I hope to see:
Clerics serving their chosen deity - in any number of ways clerics are expected to spend their life serving their chosen deity, whether it be in deeds or words.
Leading religious services – Once churches and/or temples of various types are implemented, hopefully there will be scripted interactions with the NPCs who manage the temple (or even eventually all PC run).
Preaching the gospel – Roleplayers should enjoy spreading the good word amongst the masses, whether in town, on the road or in potentially hostile situations. You never know when a good word can help out.
Serving the righteous – Good people deserve good things happening to them. Doing good deeds serves the interest of the temple and the cleric’s chosen deity, possibly bringing converts, craftsmen, and donations.
Performing religious rituals (marriage, birth, death) – Those who revere Torag or his allied gods may receive religious services in the temple of Torag. Clerics of Torag may conduct marriages, blessings , and last rites for those deemed worthy of such.
Keeping histories – Scribes record the histories of life events so they may be passed down to future generations. Temples should have scriptoriums either as part of the temple or adjacent to them (libraries should also be nearby).
Going on Sabbatical – The staff at the temple will rotate duties, allowing other clerics, paladins and priests to further their skills and education, or travel the lands seeking converts, knowledge and treasure in the name of Torag.
Performing missionary work – Converting non-believers into believers is one of the primary missions or clerics, and clerics of Torag should seek out non-believers to increase the flock whenever and wherever possible.
Serving penance – Not every cleric makes it through live untarnished. Quests of forgiveness and penance should be part of the rituals available to clerics and paladins in order to regain the divine standing with their chosen deity.
Feeding the hungry – The wretched and poor within each settlement are in constant need of care from charities. Temples can fill that need with food, clothing and medical care.
Healing the sick and tending the malformed – As noted above, clerics will serve the population within their settlement to heal the sick and care for the handicapped and abandoned.
Fighting evil – Evil knows no bounds, and should be not only held at bay, but destroyed. Fighting evil wherever it is found is a paramount duty of the divine.
Boosting Morale in the field and in battle – While in the field, armies need support through healing, prayer and morale. Clerics can perform all these duties, as well as support the armies in combat.
Resurrecting the dead (when possible) – It may be that not everyone can be resurrected automatically (perhaps they have not been faithful enough to their chosen deity). Clerics may resurrect the dead when possible, as resurrections are one of the things no others but the divinely trained may do….restore body and soul. The foul scum who only resurrect the body through the dark art of necromancy shall be punished!
In the last blog posting Over the Hill and Far Away Lee Hammock discussed hexes and settlements, and mentioned the six “Development Indices” settlements are measured on. The six indices are: Security, Industry, Population, Civilization, Spirit, and Morale.
Everyone will have their own interests at heart, but I am most interested in two of the six, Security and Spirit. But I’ll just talk about Spirit here (conjecture here, but I’ve not seen these six development indices mentioned in any depth so far anywhere else).
One of my two main characters will be a cleric, and spirit will (I believe) be generated by acts of a religious nature, prayer, piety towards your chosen deity, and perhaps various types of sacrifices, among other things. I like the idea of having some indication of the health of the community, even if the specific numbers are not known. (Some of the measures will be known, as they limit the types and amounts of structures that can be built, and probably several other features not yet discussed.)
Spirit possibly will be generated by having a number of clerics of the primary deity serving a particular temple. I will have a cleric of Torag, but I don’t think Torag will mind only having a temple or shrine to Iomedae (since they are divine drinking buddies anyway). Still, a higher Spirit score should allow for grander temples, and may be required for artifacts to be installed. It would be reasonable that if an artifact were installed in a temple, and many of the clerics dedicated to that deity defected or otherwise left the settlement, the Spirit score would drop, thereby rendering the artifact inert until the Spirit score was restored to its minimum required level.
Just some thoughts on how this will play out.
The folks at Massively have a nice story about the recent shuttering of EON Magazine, written all about EVE Online. These magazines take a tremendous amount of effort to create and any game that has fans and writers dedicated enough to create them should be applauded. But since games come and go, the closures are sadly inevitable.
Warcraft Magazine only last five editions, but I have all five and they were very well done. I was sad to see the writing stop publishing it, but they filled the remaining subscription time with PC Gamer Magazine, a decent read in iteslf.
See more at EVE Evolved: End of an EON
Something tells me the player base for Pathfinder Online will have a similar publication, but it will likely take a non-physical form (blog post, regular player run wiki and website, etc...). These pubs are labors of love, but they can get expensive to operate. I "published" a strategy guide for about a year for my alliance in a Play-by-Mail game (Into Infinity) back in the early 90's using WordPerfect back in the early 90s. Made "free" copies at my work copying machine, reducing it to 75%, and folding it into a 32 page booklet, landscaped. Free to produce since I worked in a government office and I was subsidized by the taxpayers. (Shhh...don't tell anybody!)
I check the boards at Reddit, Massively, TenTonHammer and other game sites fairly often, and there are a few consistent PFO boosters on the threads there (Paladuso2 on Reddit, Vaeris on Massively, I am on both occasionally). There really isn't much activity on those boards for Pathfinder Online. Comments are generally positive and some interaction by the GW folks might get even more interest. I know Ryan is a marketing guy and knows more about this than most any of us fellow posters, but I think it's time for some community outreach, especially since the Fulfillment Period will be coming up soon. Thoughts?
Warning....wall of text. (There are previous posts about land expansion, but little detail.)
OK. I am rereading the blog from the beginning and was scribbling on a piece of hex paper and crunching some numbers based on the original size of the proposed gaming area (11 miles by 12 miles consisting of 256 hexes) each about 1.34 square miles in area). Doing some calculations, if my group (doesn't matter what it is called) establishes a settlement in a hex, and three allied groups establish settlements in equidistant hexes three hexes away...that will give our four communities effective control (at least within a line drawn around the perimeter of the three outlying settlements) of 63 hexes. (Let's assume this is a "good" settlement. There will also be an evil settlement, and likely several neutral settlements, so everyone will have access to some sort of higher level training. That's well over half the map!)
So, if the entire initial area is 256 hexes, and we created a player kingdom, we would control almost 25% of the map. I know it is early, and I know the developers have crunched a lot more numbers than I have (well, used a big spreadsheet with fancy equations on it), but this seems like a really small area to start in.
Unless a large expansion of the playable area is already planned as the community grows! Certainly this must be the plan because I can easily see four solid groups building settlements as early as possible and forming a player nation to control 25% of the map.
Expanding the playable game area to the east (doubling it) would give 512 hexes. Stacking more to the north and east (say another 12 miles longitude and 11 miles latitude) giving four total rectangles the same size as the original starting area, and now encompassing the western third of the Echo Wood, providing players with 1024 hexes, about 528 square miles.
NOW we’re talking about player kingdoms, but the same group would only control 6% of the map!
Not trying to put any pressure on the development team, but if you are planning on growing your player base at a steady rate ala EVE Online, I hope you are also planning on greatly expanding the playable area on a fairly regular schedule. It will be far easier once your terrain creation engine and seeding systems are polished, but I see a real squeeze coming. (Conflict creation anyone?)
A wild guess at some numbers at 3 months with 5,000 regular characters logged in at any time …
Initial size - 132 square miles Initial Hexes – 256 Starting player base – 5,000 Avg players per hex – 19.5
Most will be concentrated in the first few months in the original settlements and will spread out slowly learning the mechanics and skill systems, honing combat skills and clearing land. Keep in mind the cities will be stacked deep with life, while many hexes will be empty most all the time. Some skirmishes have had 25-50 players involved.
After six months, maybe 10,000 characters logged in?
Initial Size – 132 square miles Initial Hexes – 256 Current player base – 10,000 Avg players per hex – 39
Most will be stacked up in cities, either new players in starting cities or player groups in new settlements. Most hexes will most often be empty, with passing groups exploring land and clearing the more difficult hexes in preparation for construction where possible. Battles with over 100 players have already occurred.
After 18 months, another 5,000?
Initial Size – 132 square miles Initial Hexes – 256 Current player base – 15,000 Avg players per hex – 58.5
Cities are getting very crowded. The starting cities are regularly jammed with new arrivals. The earliest settlements are getting pretty advanced and the earliest characters are starting to be able to consider large combat scenarios. Larger skirmishes have already occurred with over 250 combatants, though full out sieges of settlements seems unlikely (could be wrong here).
Let’s go another year out. Technical bugs are rare. Word has spread through the sandbox MMO community the game is a lot of fun and players who don’t mind some PvP risk come in to check it out. In this year I think you could realistically see at least another 10-15,000 new players. So we are 2 ½ years in, the first players are just now getting their 20th merit badge securing the most powerful skills of their class. Many groups have tried some of the toughest PvE encounters, and some have succeeded. Most of the land has been well explored many times over and the early players are getting itchy.
Initial Size – 132 square miles Initial Hexes – 256 Current player base – 25,000 Avg players per hex – 98
If I am right (it’s all a guess anyway, right?), after 2 ½ years, all the players cities will be busting at the seams, the starting cities will be totally unable to manage the crowds who will be moving out as soon as they are able. Thieves and ne’er-do-wells will heavily populate all major population centers to get as much easy loot as possible. The largest player organizations will be competing fiercely for control of land and several large player run settlements will have by now been destroyed in large scale battles with siege engines and up to 1,000 players fighting in the field in the biggest battles.
This would be the time to introduce fast travel (mounts, if not already introduced) and expand the playable map space. Player kingdoms will have been started, some successful, some already gone (if the mechanics are is place and tested thoroughly).
So, what direction to expand? (Along with my guesses.)
East, to include more of the River Kingdoms. Mostly plains and forest land. Great for farming, timber, open land ready for the largest settlements, and more chaos. (Deemed most likely)
North, to include the western part of the Echo Woods and possibly that southern tip on Numeria (Castle Urion is run by worshipers of Iomedae, which fits with the current starting dieties). (Deemed likely)
West, to include parts of Ustalav. Initially this area would look much like the River Kingdoms, as a land expansion large enough to include mountains in Ustalav would be enormous…likely far too large for one land expansion. (Deemed unlikely) (One of my mains will be a Dwarf and wants to see some area near a mountain or large foothills to establish a proper Dwarven stronghold. The River Kingdoms doesn’t seem to have anything of the sort.)
South, again, much like an expansion to the east with more open plains and less forest. Not heard much about the South, as the general trend and the back story has our Crusaders all traveling north to the World Wound. (Deemed unlikely)
This is a list of lists. In case the developers needed a little encouragement to see lists of stuff, here are some lists (just lists, not concerned with climate or ecology for this purpose)....
Farm Animals: Cows, pigs, sheep, oxen, horses, turkey, chickens, geese, ducks, goats, llamas
Grain Type Crops: Corn, wheat, rice, hops, barley, rye, oats, sorghum, millet, sugar cane
Orchards: Apples, pears, peaches, plums, grapes, pineapples, oranges, grapefruit, tangerines
Nuts: Chestnuts, pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, peanuts, brazil nuts, garbanzo beans, pistachios
Fibers: alpaca wool, sheep wool, angora wool, llama wool, cashmere, jute, flax, cotton
Cloth: Linen, wool, silk, hemp, flax, mohair, catgut, tapestry
Mined goods: Copper, tin, silver, gold, mithril, adamantite, salt, silica, coal, clays
Gemstones: Opal, tanzanite, topaz, zircon, citrine, peridot, lapis lazuli, jacinth, sapphire, tourquoise, pearl, jade, quartz, garnet, moonstone, amethyst, tourmaline, onyx, emerald, ruby
Timber: Pine, maple, oak, cedar, cherry, yew, hickory, chestnut, beech, sassafras, bamboo, palm, mahogany, ironwood, balsa, willow
Wagons (# of horses or other draft animals): standard plow (1-2), peddler wagon (1-2), horse-drawn travois (1), chariot (1-2), sulky (1), hay wagon (1), slate or quarry wagon (4+), timber wagon (4+), merchant wagon (1-2), gypsy wagon (2), performance wagon (2), aristocrat coach (1-4), military supply wagon (4), military troop transport (4-8), heavy industry wagon (4-8)
Beneficial Insects: Bees, silkworms, spiders, beetles
Throw some lists up here...
Just saw the bi-weekly article pop on Massively called "Some Assembly Required" covering sandbox MMOs. This time they discuss games where crafting is a critical element of the gameplay, versus just a dull mechanic.
Check it out here...
(Can't get the hyperlink to work....but check it out...nice to see. The article mostly covers the upcoming "The Repopulation" but also links to Pathfinder Online.)
Might be a bit morbit to discuss, but this is the indusrty I work in. Without going into detail, death happens. It will come to us all eventually. If possible, I think it would be an important event to include if legally allowed.
When players die in game, they are eventually ressurected and return to the game. When players either stop playing or close their accounts, they just stopp logging all of a sudden, and only occasionally post on the forums again to tell their fellow players why they stopped playing and maybe what happened.
If a player dies in real life, like what happened to a player in EVE, I think it would be appropriate to honor that players's characters in game with a funeral service (if legally allowed in the Terms of Acceptance). It is a sad reality, but would give player characters a chance to pause and reflect, and would allow a memorial cemetary or graveyard in game. It would also give that player's guildmates or fellow settlers the opportunity to throw a fitting funeral wake and contribute to an appropriately extravagant or memorable tombstone. It would also provide an amazing level or realism to the ingame cemetary. Players could gather at events and look at the tombstones and tell the stories of adventure and heroism about that time they went with so-and-so to slay the dragon, fight the battle, win a drinking game or whatever the decedent's famous deed was.
Let us plan to remember our fellow adventurers!
I didn't see a link here for this interview. It happened about 2 weeks ago (published January 30th, 2013).
It is a very informative interview. A few details have changed since the interview, but it is great.
If you turn the volume up to hear Ryan well, the audio for the interviewer is super loud. But it's a great interview.
While I understand these things listed here will, by programming necessity, be a low priority, I would like to state I hope these are on the long list to be included in the PFOs art and programming schedule, even if they are well after initial launch:
Racial and cultural building facades and decorations (Elf, Dwarf, Barbarian, Nomadic, etc…)
The lives of NPCs as they travel to and from work, go to wash their clothes at the river or nearby fountain, hanging out laundry to dry, repairing their houses or shacks, sweeping off the stoop, children playing, workers carrying burdens to and fro, you get the picture…
Things like barrels catching rainwater, roof tiles falling off, work crews repairing roads
IN THE WILDERNESS:
Tress blossoming, flowers blooming, other foliage doing its thing
Non-hostile creature encounters such as seeing birds nesting, raccoons foraging, rabbits feeding, a flock of birds rushing out of a wheat field, migrating animals, etc…
Noteworthy day and night cycles and cycles of the moon and sun, perhaps with some celestial events that could foretell events for the sake of lore
Operation seasons, wind, and weather events that have an impact on cities, the wilderness and the terrain. (I personally would like to see a little of the racial trait significance on different types of weather if the mechanics of the game eventually lend itself to expressing these weather events)