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All posts created by Bob

Bob
Decius
Oh, and quarries still produce ore while mines produce stone?

Nope, I changed the Resource bonus for Quarries to Bulk Stone and for Mines to Bulk Ore. I also changed Trading Posts to 2-12 Trade Goods (instead of 4-24) and Fisheries to Bulk Food (instead of Trade Goods).
Bob
Decius
Fixing my spreadsheets again now.

To be sure, if either outpost is producing any of the resources the holding can, the holding produces the amount and type indicated for its plus?

That is correct.
Bob
Bob
Adding in a restriction that the hex's outposts need to be producing at least some of that bulk resource in order to get the bonus would certainly add an incentive to make holdings match the theme of each hex, but hopefully not so strong a bonus that every holding in an area will be exactly the same. It would also mean that there'd be a pretty big incentive to always match at least one outpost to the holding, which might lower variety a bit. However, only one outpost producing that bulk resource would be required, so the second outpost could still be just about anything that works acceptably with the hex's bulk rating.

Overall, I think that would be a good change, so I'll file a feature request to get it implemented. Not sure if we'll be able to get it in for EE 12, but I don't think it will be too difficult to get in eventually.

And we got this in for EE 12.
Bob
As soon as we have a rough plan worked out, I'll open up a more detailed discussion on the forums. Hopefully there'll be some time for us to work through the details during the early days of EE 13.
Bob
Bringslite of Staalgard
When you advise "Do not stretch much beyond what you can achieve in Influence right now"(paraphrasing) "because that is too far when we reintroduce the cap", it sounds like we will be dropped right back into the situation that we are already in. Most companies have been around long enough that they are capped and nearly fully "banked" as well.

I definitely don't want to give the impression that we'll be returning things to a state that feels limited much like the current situation is. We want there to be limits to influence use, but we want them to result in a world that feels reasonable at any scale. That doesn't necessarily mean that the results are exactly the same at any scale, just that they feel reasonable at any scale, and it's fair to say that the current method of limiting influence doesn't hit that goal at the current scale. Without the limits, we could very quickly find ourselves feeling unreasonable in the opposite direction, but between the limited pace of earning influence and the logistical problems of moving around too many bulk resources, there should still be at least some limits on overall development.
Bob
Duffy Swiftshadow
I'm a bit curious Bob, do you guys know how many active players we actually have (not accounts, I wouldn't be surprised if there were a ton more accounts doing nothing or being used as alts)?

We have a rough idea, but players having multiple accounts (or minimally-active accounts) certainly makes it difficult to be certain. Between that and the fact that we're planning for those numbers to grow, what we're looking to do is to make the system result in an appropriate/reasonable amount of influence availability for any number of active players, or active accounts, or active characters.
Bob
Nihimon
Maybe I made a bad assumption. I thought the primary reason the Influence Cap was being removed was to allow very small groups to go ahead and earn enough Influence to do something useful with Holdings and Outposts now, while the population is so low. Is that the case? Or was there some other reason that I missed?

It was certainly done in part to help things work better while the population is low, but not just as something to do until population is high enough for the original system to work. We feel that the correct solution is to fix the system so that it scales better to handle both low and high populations. On top of that, we also wanted to rebalance things between those companies that had lots of inactive characters and those that don't. We ultimately want to fix both issues properly, but this was a very quick way to achieve both goals, and we figured it was okay to have no cap temporarily because at least everyone is somewhat limited by the rate at which they can earn influence. We couldn't do the proper fixes before EE 12, but we want to get them done before the lack of limits causes its own problems.
Bob
Ah, I see where my statement was problematic. I didn't mean to imply that influence will necessarily be returning in its current form, just that it would continue to include the aspect of growing less and less efficient as companies grow in size. It clearly needs to be tweaked, and we have some tweaks in mind that should make it scale much better so it will work both with the current population and as the population grows. We just weren't going to be able to fully flesh out those tweaks in time for EE 12, but we still hope to be able to do them soon. My warning really is meant just to cover the more obvious cases of overreach, where a relatively small group works like crazy to earn influence while it's unlimited and then banks far more of it than larger, but still reasonably-active companies. As long as you don't feel like you're straining to take advantage of this temporary state and take over as many hexes as you possibly can, everything should be fine. That's certainly the goal of all the tweaks we're discussing.
Bob
Bringslite of Staalgard
Influence will be made relevant again, including the mechanics that make influence less and less efficient to work with the larger your company is. We don't intend to have influence be as unlimited as we're making it in EE 12 for very long.
See that really is disturbing. How many times a year are we expected to redesign and rebuild our Holding networks?

We do try to keep changes that really require a rethink of your Holdings and Outposts to a minimum, and when we do make changes requiring it we try to lump them together as much as possible. I did say when announcing this change (well, technically in my first follow-up post shortly after the announcement post) that this would be temporary, though we won't know exactly how temporary until we figure out where we can fit a more permanent solution into the schedule. Unlimited influence is better than what we have right now, but clearly isn't ideal, so we don't want to stick with it longer than necessary. Our current thoughts on a permanent solution try to avoid forcing significant changes unless a company really overreaches. Here was my original advice on that front:

When we do get something put in, some companies will fairly quickly find themselves with insufficient influence if they've spread too far. There aren't any specific numbers I could warn people about going beyond at this time, but I'd just say that if you really have to push yourselves to earn the influence to get those buildings placed/upgraded now, there's a good chance you won't be able to keep them later.
Bob
As blinding proof of how useful posting features like this in advance is so that everyone can hash through them, it was pointed out to us that it's possible to use settlements (which can't currently be attacked until they're surrounded) as corners in an effectively impregnable collection of hexes. To get around this, we've allowed attackers to force the PvP Windows to open during the 3-day PvP period by placing sufficiently powerful siege equipment in a neighboring hex and feuding the hex's owner. To do so, right after Daily Maintenance the neighboring hex has to have a full complement of active siege equipment (1 Siege Engine and 2 Siege Camps), the lowest Tier/Upgrade combination among the siege equipment must be at least as good as the hex's Holding (any T3 siege equipment will guarantee this for now, while T2 equipment will need to have at least the same upgrade level), and must be feuding the hex's owner. If all that is met, then the hex will run its PvP Window as long as nothing else is blocking it. This was something we were always planning to add in order to make siege equipment more useful, but now seemed like an opportune time to get it implemented and solve this problem at the same time.