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Demotion of unsubscribed characters

Bob
Maxen
Whatever the likeliness, it is a real possibility that an inactive account could resub and do significant damage to a company or settlement within minutes with no recourse by the other active players. If that happens, I would expect Paizo to look at the logs and investigate the situation. If it's determined that a non-active account was suddenly resubbed and the settlement vault was cleaned out and/or outposts/holdings torn down, I expect that situation to be corrected by reimbursing the company with lost items. I would also expect that player to be removed from the company immediately. This is not unreasonable because we do not have the tools to effectively manage it ourselves.

This is kind of a tricky question, in large part because each company leader is currently capable of acting unilaterally on every leadership decision. Whether someone resubs (which could just mean they had a billing error they weren't able to take care of quickly enough) or keeps an account constantly active, they're capable of doing a great deal of harm to the company very quickly, and implementing safeguards for that (e.g. making it so that destroying holdings takes unanimous/majority consent, limiting the amount that can be withdrawn from certain vaults each day) will be time-consuming, and for now we've biased toward giving leaders the ability to lead effectively over protecting the companies from those dangers. On the other hand, when it became obvious just how valuable a structure is, and particularly how valuable upgraded structures will be, we removed the ability of settlement leaders to tear them down in-game, instead requiring that they contact us to have the structures torn down with GM commands. That gives us an opportunity to verify that all settlement co-owners agree with the decision. Also, tearing down structures is something we don't really want to encourage anyway. Tearing down holdings is something we expect to see pretty regularly, so we don't really want to turn that into something that you have to wait on a GM for.

In general, I'd suggest breaking into multiple companies, and spreading the leadership between those companies such that no one leader can do more than a little damage to your settlement/alliance overall. There aren't a lot of in-game safeguards to minimize espionage (and to some degree we always want to allow at least some espionage), so it's important to organize yourselves with the understanding that you could be betrayed at any time. To deal with cases where the restricted leadership goes inactive, leadership challenge rules will allow you to leave alts in place as Officers so that they can take over relatively quickly if that happens.
Caldeathe Baequiannia
Smitty
without direct developer involvement-

Let the players sort it out.
This is the sticking point. The as-proposed design included mechanisms for players to decide leadership issues among themselves. Unfortunately, in the absence of those tools, we are left with no choice except developer involvement. That's complex code, that requires among other things, a way to poll players in game. It appears that Bob is willing to take the heat and effort, probably because the charters concept does not offer an acceptable return on programming investment at this time. Since Bob has indicated he wants to do it, I think we have to step back and be prepared to deal with problems as they arise.
To reach me, email d20rpg@gmail.com
Bob
Smitty
The original group decides to give PFO a shot again ( GW and Paizo should support that idea)- All the original leaders of that company come back- they are expecting that they have a company with a 1k-1.5k influence.

With this “ email us if you want to keep the company idea” - these guys would be ousted from their own company .. not by players but by the developers of the game and the policies of the company..

There is certainly a risk that inactive leaders would feel their company was taken from them during their absence, and would have similar feelings to it as if we had emptied their inventory or their vaults in Thornkeep. On the other hand, the various write-ups about companies often included mentions of eventual voting/succession rules, so there was always some implication that leadership could eventually pass to someone else if a player went inactive.

That said, I did want to provide some protections for inactive leaders in the challenge rules, particularly for those who set up their companies as largely personal companies, as opposed to more truly shared ventures. If all of the company leaders are inactive, then they'd only get demoted if they don't respond with a protest within two weeks, since there's nobody around to deny their protest. If there are still some active leaders, then those active leaders have the capability to strip the company of everything, so the inactive leaders can't expect to return to much of a company anyway if they don't maintain good relations with those active leaders.

This does make me think that it would be a good idea to let any active leader veto the challenge upfront. That way, when the active leadership is intentionally holding the company for inactive leaders, they can veto the challenge just in case the inactive leaders wouldn't be able to respond with a protest in time. I do still want to make it possible for non-leaders to successfully challenge leadership when there isn't any active leadership, and there I think it's reasonable to say that if none of the inactive leadership even responds with a protest, then that's enough to justify shuffling the leadership around. I'll add that to the original proposal.
Bob
Quick edits to the original proposal: Added the ability of active leaders to veto the challenge at any time, and added a two-week time limit for approving/disapproving any protests.
Bob
Caldeathe Baequiannia
Smitty
without direct developer involvement-

Let the players sort it out.
This is the sticking point. The as-proposed design included mechanisms for players to decide leadership issues among themselves. Unfortunately, in the absence of those tools, we are left with no choice except developer involvement. That's complex code, that requires among other things, a way to poll players in game. It appears that Bob is willing to take the heat and effort, probably because the charters concept does not offer an acceptable return on programming investment at this time. Since Bob has indicated he wants to do it, I think we have to step back and be prepared to deal with problems as they arise.

Yes, until we can implement in-game mechanics, things like this do require our direct involvement, but I tried to write the rules up so that they allow as little leeway as possible. That way I'm not making big decisions so much as just facilitating a process. The exception is the part about rejecting frivolous/repetitive challenges, but that's about keeping the workload to a minimum and avoiding bothering inactive players with constant emails.
Caldeathe Baequiannia
A couple of suggestions/questions:

1) once the rules are (relatively) written in stone, can they get their own post that people can't reply to but which contains a link to a thread where they can reply and comments are encouraged. (Preferably a post in some sort of "Rules updates, Additions, and Consolidations" sub-forum where no-one but Paizo employees can post)

2) do you intend any mechanism for removal of companies in which there is no active player to challenge? We might get some significant hex cleaning if the settlement-company to which a dead company is pledged could challenge its holdings without expending resources on a feud/siege, with the successfully challenged company losing their holdings and having the majority of their influence returned to the them.
To reach me, email d20rpg@gmail.com
Bob
Father Bronin
Four weeks seems pretty short. If I lose internet access for 6 weeks I can be removed as a company leader?

Since there has to be a challenge, you'd pretty much have to have created a situation in which members of your company were bothered enough by your lack of activity to file the challenge. You'd also have to not respond to that warning email within 2 weeks and not have any other active leader prepared to defend your leadership.

Of course, as I've suggested elsewhere, you may want to restrict active leadership somewhat, which could leave nobody to veto the challenge. However, just make sure there are active Officers in the company who would promote you back to leader when you return, since those are the people who would become leaders if you don't protest in time.
Bob
Caldeathe Baequiannia
1) once the rules are (relatively) written in stone, can they get their own post that people can't reply to but which contains a link to a thread where they can reply and comments are encouraged. (Preferably a post in some sort of "Rules updates, Additions, and Consolidations" sub-forum where no-one but Paizo employees can post)

Yes, I'll do something along these lines. At the very least, I'll make it it's own topic where the original post can always be kept up-to-date regardless of how many replies are put after it.

Caldeathe Baequiannia
2) do you intend any mechanism for removal of companies in which there is no active player to challenge? We might get some significant hex cleaning if the settlement-company to which a dead company is pledged could challenge its holdings without expending resources on a feud/siege, with the successfully challenged company losing their holdings and having the majority of their influence returned to the them.

Not right yet, but when we have a chance to revisit Max Influence, the plan is to make it so that an inactive company would lose influence over a reasonable period of time, shutting down their outposts and eventually resulting in the holdings being shut down and removed when they run out of bulk resources.
Flari-Merchant
This is supposed to be a dynamic game. Companies and settlements do not have the luxury of turning on and off personal force fields that take their organizations in and out of real time.

The way that I interpret Bob's proposal to challenge settlement/company leadership is done from within that Org's own ranks. The other alternatives being already in place for more "physical" means of dealing with 100% inactive positions.

Only by feeding absentees the idea that their previous "positions SHOULD be static until they decide whether to return or not to find all the same for them do you get a twisted logic that it should be so. Time marches on.

It seems like a fair system for now if not abused.
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Lisa Stevens
Smitty
KB is now Carpe - and who is one of the players of carpe ? The CEO of GW/Paizo.

Just to be clear, the settlement that I call home is University Commons. Reefer owns Carpe. I hang around a lot with him and some other Carpe folks, since they play at the same time that I do. Also, I make no settlement level decisions or negotiations. I leave that to Garric and Nac. I also have no settlement secure vault access or any ability to set PVP windows, put up buildings, set settlement level, or deal with permissions.

-Lisa
 
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