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Nothing to Fight for...

Elsworth Sugarfoot
There's little to no reward for victory in PvP.

Mules coming in will provide targets, but again you will have the unsavory interaction of Pvpers and Gatherers.

There are about 10 players who actively go seek pvp and 9 of them are in Golgotha.

This is basically a plea for content in that area.
Nihimon
Elsworth Sugarfoot
There's little to no reward for victory in PvP.

Tell me about it. We swept through the land conquering everything in our path and it made almost no difference at all to anyone - victor or vanquished. It certainly didn't have any persistent impact.

Elsworth Sugarfoot
There are about 10 players who actively go seek pvp and 9 of them are in Golgotha.

There are several players in Phaeros who would gladly PvP every time they logged in, and would log in more frequently if they knew they'd get to PvP.
Nihimon murmurs in sheer ecstasy as the magic courses through his veins
Tink says Stab
Nihimon
Tell me about it. We swept through the land conquering everything in our path and it made almost no difference at all to anyone - victor or vanquished. It certainly didn't have any persistent impact.

Yup. Both sides of the conflict have basically owned the entire other sides territory, and you wouldn't know it unless someone told you. Maybe Holding/Outpost raiding will improve things, but given the low costs for support in the immediate future, and the huge stockpiles people have built up, I can't say I am particularly confident.
Tink quivers in sheer euphoria as the dank memes course through his fedora
Decius
The field of battle is so large that a smart attack will occur at an I defended time and place, and defending everything is prohibitively time intensive.

Tools that allowed us to negotiate high value high cost highly specific engagements would help drive large group PvP and make the mercenary companies happy as well.
Brighthaven Leader
Most settlements are currently setup for a long while with extra resources. Its going to be months before attacking someone's holdings will have an effect, unless they change the relationship between our building to our training.

I think that they should go back to the support mechanic, change it so that instead of looking at your settlement ONLY, it looks at your alliance. So, effectively, you could spread out all the core buildings and training among your entire alliance. You could have it cost 50-100 of each DI to be in an alliance with another settlement.

This would fix it so that holdings are extremely important, because you are tying DI directly to what training you have available. This would also fix people visiting your settlement for training that isn't in your alliance. Eventually when you add parameters that allow settlements to allow specific training, you can reintroduce the support buildings so that we can purchase training from outside alliance in specializations that alliance doesn't have (can't afford).

You could also limit settlements to have a certain max alliances allowed mechanic. So its a very meaningful choice which settlements you ally yourself with.

You could have several levels of alliance as well.

Full Alliance - Includes, Training, Trade, and Embassy, as well as full support.
Training Alliance - Allows the ability to train at a settlement, but does not give support, includes Embassy Alliance.
Trade Alliance - Allows the ability for Companies from a settlement to have Company and Settlement (their own) Bank Access, as well as reduced prices on training, auction house, and other future items. Includes Embassy Alliance.
Embassy Alliance - A settlements guards will act in defense of another settlements membership, and will not kill them on sight.

This way it is EXTREMELY meaningful to have a decent amount of DI. It also means instead of allowing us to set our guards up with some hardcore intense tech and UI choices, it could just be tied to the alliance mechanic.

This makes DI even more meaningful than it is now, and constantly having to allocate DI to alliance will make who you associate with, who comes to your settlement, who trains, who buys stuff, etc.. makes it all so much more meaningful.

Embassy could extend automatically to new players for the first week or two they are in the game, so they can go explore and so on. They would have a count down timer showing them essentially when they need to choose a settlement or faction, or all settlements will be off limits to them, other than starters (for them to enter without being attacked).

Which ever Faction, from each level of Factions, that your settlements chooses to participate in would also have Embassy within your settlement, if they have flagged themselves for Faction PvP.

You could even set prices within this tech for training and auction houses.

The interplay would be awesome within the server and in the future, and you could adjust limits on how many of each alliance one settlement can maintain, as well as the costs, in DI, for the alliances.
Brighthaven is a Neutral Good settlement focused on defending its citizens and its allies from negative fringe based PvP (Player Killing and Griefing) while striving to become a large and shining beacon for Good. Whether you wish to benefit from this protection or you love PvP and wish to assist in providing this protection, Brighthaven aims to be the home and support center for you!
Brighthaven Leader
To further this -

Foothold Mechanics:

Each individual person can join a Faction, and each Faction can work like a tiny Settlement, that allows for a Foothold, in case you have lost your settlement or are an individual. Each Faction would have 4 levels, with several support buildings each (these would actually be like forts in game that could go into settlement hexes/ruins hexes) inside of a small fort somewhere on the map. Each building would give an individual person support, based on what level they are of that faction.

Also, each Faction can have a special sub group that can be joined.

Example:

Merchant Faction, subgroup 1) Experts, subgroup 2) Freeholders

Merchant Fort for Experts: Has the Expert and all crafting support buildings (no actual training or crafting buildings).
Merchant Fort for Freeholders: Has Freedholder and all gathering refining support buildings (no training or crafting).

You are a Level 1 Merchant in the Expert group, you would have support for your armor feat, feature feat, and what ever crafting you would do. You would not have support for anything else.

Level 1 - 9-10, Level 2 11-12, Level 3 13-14, Level 4 15-16

To get to level 2 or above you would have to flag yourself for PvP within that Faction, as well as do quests to level up each of your factions.

If you are not part of a settlement, you may designate 1 Faction for your support.
Brighthaven is a Neutral Good settlement focused on defending its citizens and its allies from negative fringe based PvP (Player Killing and Griefing) while striving to become a large and shining beacon for Good. Whether you wish to benefit from this protection or you love PvP and wish to assist in providing this protection, Brighthaven aims to be the home and support center for you!
vyal
An idea I saw pitched to shroud of the avatar was basically this: (they never used it)

Structures of value can be targeted and defended in three ways.
By Air, by Land, and Underground.

The attack and defense of these three aspects of every structure was provided by NPC scripts. Outfitting NPC's required consumption of all raw materials, refined, gathered, crafted goods. This was done to either recreate the habitat of the creatures (elementals, magical, rare) or the food they required (animals), or the armor and weapons they used in battle (humanoid). Training them consumed things like implements, books, torques or whatever training widgets you wanted to add (furniture, cages, domestic items). A simple example was it's relatively easy to train a bunch of crows, feed, and house them. They're your air defense or attack. Ground based could be things like wolves, whereas underground could be magical creatures, anything that could dig (humanoids) or dungeon/tunnel access, that kind of thing. The intent was to have transition points that placed you beneath the world surface in various tunnel types to assist or defend as the underground battle raged as well. These would be placed and removed dynamically as subsurface prefabs.

The PvP aspect came in when either the defense or attack could be assisted by players. For example, when the air attack occurred, players could bolster the defenses, or press the attack, by healing, defending, attacking, etc, the NPCs, or participate directly in the battle.

The trick was, one of these scripts took eight hours to run. If players participated, the shortest it could be reduced to was 4 hours. Thus, at best, a defended fort took a minimum of 12 hours, presuming only one wave of defenders at each type of fortification, to remove each fortification. This would then give the attackers a reason to reduce the script length (8hrs -> 4) but give the defenders a chance to sleep and deal with time zones. Typically, if an attacker came along and dropped an attack, if there was no more interaction, and the attacking and defending NPCs were roughly equal, the attack would take 8 hours without any PvP involvement. Another attack could start at the end of that 8 hours, but all members of the attacking and/or defending player factions/alliances would get server-wide broadcasts for attacks starting and ending.

Then you add in the ability to stock multiple defense waves, or launch multiple attack waves, for larger structures, and you have a massive resource sink, as well as a strategic need to visit those value structures. Don't want your enemy to restock their defenses? Blockade that value structure.

Optionally, if you want more PvP involvement, you make the resources required to create the most effective attack and defense waves in PvP flagged hexes. These materials don't need to have value outside the need to create the attack and defense wave widgets, depending on design goals for crafting and the economy.

In practice, on the server, it's extremely easy. You simply start a script, generate the actors, set them to attack each other only, initially, and handle allies and enemies via faction aggro. These could be varying types of actors, as has been demonstrated in other games, that prolong the battles appropriately, or simple expire/die on timers appropriate to impose/create the script delay you want.
Visually, of course, the battle could be large to small, as you wish, with potentially large single attackers with many small defenders, or the other way around. As far as reward goes, you can make it so the participants only get loot from the attackers or defenders if present, and/or they get no loot, but resources directly involved as a sort of resource recovery mechanic.

As always, the timers could be adjusted to require more or less waves, or have the scripts run longer or shorter, and to allow players to replace/substitute/stand in for air, land, and underground attack & defense scripts entirely via PvP and PvE.

Anyway, happy to discuss it further, here or via email (vile.vyal@gmail.com). There's considerably more implementation details involved in the system, but it appears it would fit into PFO.
Midnight
Defense in this game is ridiculous. I have no holdings, so any defensive play (for other companies) is purely optional. I can launch a feud every day. My enemy has to be vigilant, every single day.

I still favor allowing PvP windows to be set to a certain number of hours per week, so people can choose weekend PvP windows over nightly PvP windows. Is Goblinworks going to make holdings defense a 7 day a week part time job for defenders?
He who wrestles with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill. Our antagonist is our helper.
-Edmund Burke
Tyv Blodvaerd of Aragon
Elsworth Sugarfoot
There's little to no reward for victory in PvP.

Mules coming in will provide targets, but again you will have the unsavory interaction of Pvpers and Gatherers.

There are about 10 players who actively go seek pvp and 9 of them are in Golgotha.

This is basically a plea for content in that area.

This is like complaining that bank robbers rob banks, and not police stations.

One of the main points of territorial control is to control the access to resources. The game is meant to be involved with economic warfare, as much if not more than political or ideological (alignment) warfare. Attacking gatherers and stealing their resources is economic warfare.

There is nothing to fight for, because the community and the game designers have made it a point to not encourage PVP that would result in looting.

The game has been developed to make it far too costly to PVP, without reputation loss, and with the reputation loss the only players who can afford to PVP are those that can't train any skills within the 6 day recovery anyway.

The Mule System will finally present targets that have more potential to produce a reward for those PVPers who are willing to take the rep hit, or for those that want to get something back for their victories. The losers will actually have something more than 5% durability (on gear they can easily replace) to lose, and thus finally add some risk.

In another game I am currently Alpha testing, the PVP system is both zone based and flag (declared war) based. The loot drop system is interesting.

Yellow Zone: If you get killed here, you don't lose your gear but it degrades by 25%. You also lose 25% of your inventory (destroyed) and drop the other 75%, plus coin that matches the 25% of the gear value (this does not come from your bank, it comes from the system).

Red Zone: 25% degrade, full loot of both gear and inventory, and drop of 25% coin value of gear. The victorious can actually take the coin and repair the gear and then sell it or salvage it for a decent to big profit.

Dungeons: Same as the zone they are found in, except that in Green (safe) zones, PVP is enabled for dungeons and follows Yellow Zone rules.

Bottom line is, PVP has both Risk and Reward.
Aragon (CN) a settlement founded on the principles of the River Freedoms: Say What You Will; Oath Breakers Die; Walk Any Road, Float Any River; Courts are for Kings; Slavery is an Abomination; Have What You Hold.

Settlement Focus: Fighter and Rogue Training
Game Play: Escalations / Refining / Crafting / Defensive PVP
vyal
Tyv Blodvaerd of Aragon
Elsworth Sugarfoot
There's little to no reward for victory in PvP.

Mules coming in will provide targets, but again you will have the unsavory interaction of Pvpers and Gatherers.

This is like complaining that bank robbers rob banks, and not police stations.


One of the main points of territorial control is to control the access to resources. The game is meant to be involved with economic warfare, as much if not more than political or ideological (alignment) warfare. Attacking gatherers and stealing their resources is economic warfare.

There is nothing to fight for, because the community and the game designers have made it a point to not encourage PVP that would result in looting.
As with all my posts, this is just my narrow biased selfish opinion, no facts intended or implied.

I get your point about attacking gatherers. Unfortunately, it doesn't quite work out that way, for new players, in my experience.
The new player has nothing. They have their inventory and their vault, no money, no skills, and no friends, yet.
So, what do they do? They spend their starting xp, and go out and adventure and harvest. Or they don't login for a month, and add no value to the community. (but that's a separate problem)

Now, it could be argued that currently, some players won't attack an un-companied player. Currently, that's true more often than false. But that's not a game mechanic holding back that emergent gameplay, it's a gentleman's agreement among less than ~200 active daily players. If this game ever gets popular, I would put forth the idea that this will disappear, and everyone will be targeted, regardless of company or settlement.

What I'm getting at is, those new players represent new prey, and once consumed, has a chance to be gone, permanently. If the entire goal is simply resource acquisition, in the long term, it's better to go get it yourself than it is to kill members of your community to get it. Why? Because in the long term, you want that opponent or ally in the game; the value they represent as 'content' is far greater than the 25 coal they're carrying, just one time.

Having been on the giving and receiving end of player conflict since 1995, in persistent multiplayer online games, I've seen environments where the predators have consumed all the prey, and are left standing around saying "there's no content" because we drove all the content away. I've seen it in M59, UO, AC/AC2, DAoC, Warhammer and many other titles that have all tried the same idea between then and now. PvP is content. People are the end-game. You'll be raiding other players. I've heard all the mantra's, marketing, and doublespeak. Unfortunately, having seen this attempted and failed many times, I am convinced that pointless killing is a dead end and ultimately self-defeating mechanic, given permadeath is not an option.

Setting aside the social issues, PvP becomes a shell game in any territory game that has tried it. In Warhammer Online, antagonists colluded to ensure the most people were online at the right time for sieges, to get the greatest chance at personal loot. It wasn't about tangible persistent changes, it was about selfish personal loot, because … wait for it … PvP was the only way to get the best loot in the game. Once players figured out what the leaders were doing, well, that was the end of that. Farming other players (and their time and effort) for personal gain doesn't sit well with paying customers. Also, "gaming the system" (aka cheating) also didn't sit will with a LOT of players, after they saw what contrivances were required to see the end-game content.

Overall, my point is that something grander is needed. There needs to be an overarching point to PvP that is greater than "omg ph4t l00tzor!" or "just for the lolz". And given the realities of time zones and that people don't want to play a job (they already have a job!), you either build the system with NPC involvement, or GW is simply going to be another social experiment failed, repeating history. And no, resource acquisition is not enough. It's not grand enough. Farming players for resources doesn't work. It didn't work in UO, and it won't work in PFO. And it's not because of any mechanics, flags, faction, aggro or reputation. It's because of there are humans involved. Ugly bags of mostly water with ego's to either stroke or crush.

I think that when you give all customers a valued role to play in a grand story, regardless of their play style, that game has a chance to be popular and fun. Having a large percentage of your paying customers (paying in time or money) be unable or unwilling to participate in the grand story simply slices off massive chunks of potential target demographics. What I'm dancing around here is the ever present threat of losing weeks of time & effort, trivially, is holding this game back from being popular. Without critical population, this is a social experiment, and nothing more. Attracting a critical mass of prey in the era of Clash of Clans, Game of War, and Candy Crush is impossible, evidently.
It's unreasonable to expect that a new player (less than 6 months of xp, let's be honest) is going to voluntarily lose everything they have, literally, when it's not their fault. Saying "get more friends" or "l2p" simply drives them back to Clash of Clans, Game of War, and Candy Crush. You know what happens when neighborhoods are controlled by gangs, and people can move away? They move away, curse the gangs, and never look back.

And you can't bait and switch. Allods tried it. One of the finest client server bit of code I've ever seen, and they lured the prey by the thousands during launch month. Players were absolutely loving the game, until they hit level 25 and we were waiting. Fish in a barrel, do not pass go, you're fodder, thanks please drive through. Again, a failed social experiment. The prey all left. We were left with nothing.

I understand, (really, I do) that PFO's current target audience is in the thousands, not the tens of thousands, or hundreds of thousands. I understand the slow and steady philosophy of development. At this point, given the current apparent design goals, all this seems to be doing is delaying the inevitable. We don't appear to be getting the population we need, and there's certainly nothing to fight for, that I can see. And you know, maybe GW is okay with that, for the moment? smile It just doesn't seem likely, to me.

TL;DR? Consider this: If, via hardcoded game mechanics, half the current hex-map was PvP enabled, and half the map was PvP disabled, how many active players would PFO have? More, or less? Honestly and objectively answer that question, and you're on the right path to glory, and figuring out what would be fun to fight for. (rather than nothing!)

I'm all about the positive contribution and innovative mechanics, so, as always, if anyone wants to discuss that here or via email or jabber/xmpp/hangouts, feel free (vile.vyal@gmail.com)
 
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