How will you solve timezone issues?


Pathfinder Online


If Pathfinder Online is very much about conquering and defending territories, how will you adress the fact that your player base might be spread across different time zones?

It would be sad if everytime Europe wakes up it discover that the land has been overtaken by North America overnight and vice-versa

Best regards and Merry X-mass

Goblin Squad Member

Well, if they handle it like eve your castle will be attacked and the system will alert the defending guild and give 24 hours to muster a defence force.

:)

Goblin Squad Member

Yep. It works in EVE - and cooperations/guilds can form based on time-zones to enable to play together (or alternatively purposely form an international guild to make sure there is always someone 'on guard duty').

Liberty's Edge Goblin Squad Member

I doubt it will "work like EVE" but I am fairly sure that sieges will not be instantaneous affairs.
I have no idea what will be the mechanic implemented but I think Goblinwork will try for something with a more fantasy and renaissance flair that a impenetrable force field. Hopefully we will have a NPC force dedicated to the defence of our castles (and an associated maintenance cost for them) but other possibilities exist.
Mostly I hope it will not be some kind of magical effect stopping all combat for 24 hours till the defenders have mustered their forces.

Dark Archive Goblin Squad Member

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Perhaps the most obvious answer would be to open recruitment across all time zones. If Goblinworks gets the single server philosophy to work, then having a sizable contingent in your guild/organization across all time zones will be the easiest answer.


Diego Rossi wrote:

I doubt it will "work like EVE" but I am fairly sure that sieges will not be instantaneous affairs.

I have no idea what will be the mechanic implemented but I think Goblinwork will try for something with a more fantasy and renaissance flair that a impenetrable force field. Hopefully we will have a NPC force dedicated to the defence of our castles (and an associated maintenance cost for them) but other possibilities exist.
Mostly I hope it will not be some kind of magical effect stopping all combat for 24 hours till the defenders have mustered their forces.

How about construction of Siege Engines by the attacking force?

Goblin Squad Member

GunnerX169 wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:

I doubt it will "work like EVE" but I am fairly sure that sieges will not be instantaneous affairs.

I have no idea what will be the mechanic implemented but I think Goblinwork will try for something with a more fantasy and renaissance flair that a impenetrable force field. Hopefully we will have a NPC force dedicated to the defence of our castles (and an associated maintenance cost for them) but other possibilities exist.
Mostly I hope it will not be some kind of magical effect stopping all combat for 24 hours till the defenders have mustered their forces.
How about construction of Siege Engines by the attacking force?

Exactly, once a settlement has a certain level of build up of castle walls or whatever, it could simply require 24 hours or so for an attacking force to "set up", during which time defenders can muster and plan. Siege engines can be built, trench lines dug, supply caravans brought up...sieges were slow affairs, and even 24 hours of set up time is pretty fast overall.


Yes but a siege ≠ an assault. I do hope it will be possible to pull off quick assaults, where speed and surprise are necessary advantages. Smaller groups unable to afford the big siege equipment will need some way to go on the offensive without setting off warning alarms 24 hours in advance, otherwise it all just ends up boiling down to who has the biggest group and the most cash.

Goblin Squad Member

Sieges don't equal assaults, true, but taking territory is generally going to need to take the fortifications via siege, while an assault that is out to raid supplies or whatnot but not actually take land from the opponent, while it could be annoying if no ones awake, wouldn't be disastrous like a lost territory would be if you came online in the morning to find out it happened.

Goblin Squad Member

I would say the best way to handle it would be a combination of NPC defenses, and encorage the playerbase to actively recruit outside their normal hours. Actually the time thing could be an interesting factor as well. No mindless force bubble, but what if the primary defenses took significant offensive items to take down. Say giant catapults, ballistas, battering rams etc... Things that move slowly and might take an hour to reach the city.

The NPCs shouldn't handle everything, but they should be enough that a small group of 10 cannot take out a 100 member guild, just because they happen to be offline at the same time.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
TabulaRasa wrote:

If Pathfinder Online is very much about conquering and defending territories, how will you adress the fact that your player base might be spread across different time zones?

It would be sad if everytime Europe wakes up it discover that the land has been overtaken by North America overnight and vice-versa

Best regards and Merry X-mass

They'll probably have regional servers like Blizzard does. Maybe even Time Zone ones like Blizzard used to.

Or those Euros will just have to suck it up! :)

Goblin Squad Member

LazarX wrote:
TabulaRasa wrote:

If Pathfinder Online is very much about conquering and defending territories, how will you adress the fact that your player base might be spread across different time zones?

It would be sad if everytime Europe wakes up it discover that the land has been overtaken by North America overnight and vice-versa

Best regards and Merry X-mass

They'll probably have regional servers like Blizzard does. Maybe even Time Zone ones like Blizzard used to.

Or those Euros will just have to suck it up! :)

They have mentioned numerous times the intention to have the game take place on 1 giant server the way that eve online does.

Goblin Squad Member

I'm all for recruiting across time zones and building guilds alliances. I think that'd go a long way towards keeping communities in check from pissing everyone else off.


Like people needed more encouragement to recruit Aussies than their accent.

Goblin Squad Member

I agree with many of the comments mentioned above.

+1 for recruiting across timezones.

+1 for allowing sieges and assaults/raids. Sieges would be to contest land, assaults/raids would be for the love of PvP and/or capturing stored resources.

THE WAY SOR HANDLES SIEGES: The attacker declares and chooses a time 24-48 hrs out for the attack phase. The attackers commence the attack and if they capture the territory, the defenders get to choose a defense round 24-48 hrs out. The defenders then assault the attackers who must hold their conquest.

This means defenders only have to win one of the two battles and attackers have to win both...simulating the defenders home team advantage.

Attackers and Defenders each get to specify a time for their respective rounds.

In both rounds, the "holders" of the territory get to buy NPC guards to assist (the number and power of the NPCs are based upon the amount willing to be paid and the "level" of the fort). To clarify, in the first round, the defenders get to buy guards...if the attackers win, the fight continues to the second round in which the original attackers must defend the territory from the original owners...the initial attackers are able to buy NPC guards.

If attackers fail in the initial attack, the conquest is over (no need for a second round).

Assaults/raids on the other hand should be able to occur at any time. It would be cool if something could actually be acquired in raids (such as food/resources stored to feed a guild's NPC army or something).

HOW TO WIN IN MORE DETAIL: To explain further how this works, when a guild is attacked, it actually purchases x rounds of NPCs. The guild gets to choose the style, placement, and behavior of those NPCs guards. The winner of the round is determined by the attackers ability to kill all the NPC guards. Likewise, each round the guards get incrementally more difficult to kill (without added cost). If the attackers win x rounds (beyond a minimal threshold) the defenders must win at least x rounds in the defense phase to keep the territory.

IN PFO: I could see a system such as this working in which purchased NPC guards remain, but consume resources over time (which the guild may simply see as an upkeep cost)...assaults could steal these resources specifically leading up to a siege. NPCs who do not get "fed" will despawn, or fail to spawn...as the case may be. In fact, if these resources were tied to harvesting, guilds could avoid the upkeep cost, but be vulnerable to blockades prior to sieges.

But, I got off topic, sorry. On-topic responses are buried in there too.

Liberty's Edge Goblin Squad Member

The problem is with raids as suggested they will be done against automated defences only.
Unless those are way better than what is normally available in most games they would be nearly useless. People will learn their AI limits in no time and defeat them easily.

Losing my stuff because while I was off line some guild has raided the city where I live and the on line players were interested in defending only their property would be a big downer.
On the other hand forcing the few on-line players to defend all the city would mean that they would be unable to defend anything.

Goblin Squad Member

Diego Rossi wrote:

The problem is with raids as suggested they will be done against automated defences only.

Unless those are way better than what is normally available in most games they would be nearly useless. People will learn their AI limits in no time and defeat them easily.

Losing my stuff because while I was off line some guild has raided the city where I live and the on line players were interested in defending only their property would be a big downer.
On the other hand forcing the few on-line players to defend all the city would mean that they would be unable to defend anything.

Defenses are made to give the defenders an advantage, IE the ability to still win when slightly outmatched otherwise. a guild will be expected to recruit people who are online when they are normally offline. If it is a time when only 25%ish of players are on serverwide, then most any opponent will also be reduced to 25%, unless your opponent recruited people purely in the other timezone that your group isn't on during, which means they are super vulnerable to attack as well. The goal of a guild leader that is intending to play competitively is to amass as large and diverse of forces as he can obtain, as well as possibly cut as many treaties and alliences with neighboring guilds, so that when their forces are outmatched, they can send out an SOS and return that favor later.

Liberty's Edge Goblin Squad Member

No Onishi.
The advantage of the attacker is a raid is that he chose the time of his attack. Unless he is a moron he will always attack when he is stronger.

Even if both guilds have 100 players on line at the same time, if one is doing its normal business, with 30 players scattered around the map gathering stuff, 20 AFk, another 40 doing whatever PvE or crafting there is and 10 are guarding the city, while the other has gathered its members for a raid there is 0% chance of a successful defence.
If a raid can be done as an immediate action the defender has no chance to muster a even approximately reasonable defence.

It is a fair depiction of how it work in reality (the concept of local superiority) but it can be extremely frustrating in a game.

There is a need to balance simulation with playability, and playability is more important as it is a game.

Sadly the best mechanic AFAIK is to force a timer for any kind of attack on structures and fixed properties so that a defender can muster a defence.
It is far from optimal, but the other options seem worse.

Goblinworks Executive Founder

I had a though about dealing with offline players in the defense position to help balance against Raids or even Sieges. After all we all have lives outside the game and can't be on 24/7, or even 1 or 2/7.

Let offline players in that location grant some kind of bonus to the defenses. It would require balancing (numbers/levels/gear/etc) but an attacking group of 10 should not be able to raid a stronghold of 100 offline players, or at least be at a sizable disadvantage. After all it's not like those characters are "gone", they are technically there at that location.

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