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All posts created by Flari-Merchant

Those are all fair points about the downsides of support. We'll continue to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of support as we move forward, just as we do for other systems. For the moment, support is heavily weaved into a lot of the game's balance, and we've already seen a lot of the problems that came from switching to universal support. Adding support back in, but in a much less punitive way than it was originally implemented, should at least improve on the current overall game balance, and we can re-evaluate as more systems come in over the next year.
Can't really expect anything more fair than that. Thanks, Bob. smile
Bringslite of Staalgard
One thing I have been mulling over for a very long time: Back when the game was still just a "whiteboard" concept and we were always discussing the terrible way that griefers play and what they do to games, we were all pretty gung-ho about severe punishment.

What if we were/are OVER Zealous and that is helping cripple and further "niche-ify" the game which really limits the potential player base?

Many of the points made in this post will get touched on in the Opt-In PvP thread I'll create soon to spell out the changes we're planning on making. We do very much want to free up PvP-favoring players while also protecting PvP-averse players to a much greater degree than before. We still want some mechanisms in to reduce truly toxic behavior, but we want to make sure we're not disincentivizing reasonable PvP behavior that both sides have at least implicitly agreed to and have been appropriately informed about.

In terms of support, while I listed "punishment" as one reason for the system, I think the more important one is that it gives an ongoing advantage that more successful settlements can offer to all of their members at increasing levels. I think this new version of support offers a reasonable compromise between crushing players because they lack support and still making support meaningful, while also being incredibly simple to implement. Eventually I'd like to explore some more complicated solutions that would make the separation between "what you get because you've trained to a high rank" and "what you get because your settlement supports you in your efforts" feel more intuitive and satisfying, but those are going to take a lot of thought and implementation time.
Thank you for the reply again.
You have obviously put some thought into Support and it's downsides. I hope that you are not overestimating the gaming spirit of your future customer base. Part of the problem that I see here, is that many will see hampering their skills as taking away things that they have paid for. They likely will not be enthusiastic about joining another group(we have seen this and it is why we have what… 20 some separate groups of 1 to 10 active players?) because there is nothing like building something with a group of guys and gals and facing having to dissolve it to join another group that does things differently. Finally, support or losing support, can happen to Kosher PVP groups as well as groups that go too far in being obnoxious and anti-system.
Previously Bob had kinda liked the idea of it being possible to bring in Bulk IF the defenders could manage to knock out one of the 6 surrounding camps.
Since there is already the ability to PVP freely during any time of day, it could be up to the aggressor to stop the smugglers/relief column. One problematic thing I can see though is that players outside of the feud might bring the stuff in, thereby making the aggressor have to decide if he wants a rep hit to stop them.
Thks for the replies Bob!
One thing I have been mulling over for a very long time: Back when the game was still just a "whiteboard" concept and we were always discussing the terrible way that griefers play and what they do to games, we were all pretty gung-ho about severe punishment.

What if we were/are OVER Zealous and that is helping cripple and further "niche-ify" the game which really limits the potential player base? It's an open world PVP game so full of downsides to PVP that it has become unattractive to PVP type players in many cases. I know, as I was a loud proponent of severity.
1. At base you have the Rep system that has proven/could prove an affective deterrent at low and mid skill levels. Can't spend those xp gains… Can't improve your character.
2. You will have black and white lists soon for disallowing training by settlement or company or even name, correct?
3. There is community pressure to be reasonable or you will never be able to establish your own territory. No way to keep it with the big blocks running the lands on your current map.
4. Should you lose your Settlement and are considered anathema, you are likely forced to bank and operate crafting out of Thorn Keep, further limiting/hampering your activities. If you are too bad(reputation) you are stuck to Rotter's Hole.

Isn't that enough? Yes I have been quite vocal that Universal Support was a mistake. Look around though. There isn't really any EVIL in your world. There aren't any seriously aggressive Tyrant types or Bandits. The cost to play such is deemed too high and too difficult. What use an alignment system if no one will choose The Darker Path? If that is the goal and that is the proper "Niche" spot that you are looking for than why not eliminate the ability to PVP outside of restrictive parameters entirely? I believe that it is because you DO want Bad Guys but honestly, you are scaring them away from playing…

The effort/time that you spend on support could be put to other things. It is weird and novel enough that PLAYERS are in charge of what skills can be trained where and to what level. Perhaps it is TOO WEIRD and Novel that players should also be in control of other players being able to use the skills that they have paid cash to learn… Perhaps it is/will be an unattractive concept to potential players.

Lots of thinking has gone into what I have written here and my apparent change of stance. It isn't a whim or fancy but something with a lot of consideration behind it. I am not for Griefing or an increase in Griefing. Yet the game is supposed to derive lots of content from conflict. Conflict is too restricted, costly, definitely channeled. Perhaps what is laid out and planned is enough deterrent fo very bad behavior. It is certainly more than has been tried before, even without Support Loss.
@ Bob
Since you do not intend to have ally's settlement level be a real factor in any way beyond the specific settlement itself and there are some seriously wonky imbalances concerning the way that feat ranks are laid out, what about allowing some sort of coin sink cost to keep settlement citizen's ranks up when the Sett level has to be lower for whatever reason…. including homelessness?

There would be no way to keep it up forever if it were to be costly, but it might mitigate some concerns about… how can I take my settlement back if I lose it and live at "Hotel Thorn Keep" and have only support to 8.
Perhaps with "raiding" being added to still having to move Bulk from the field to the "City" there are enough content potential conflict opportunities available. Throw in trading and the chance to interdict, I see specializing Holdings being more efficient and trading more necessary, the numbers could be adjusted so that Holdings can be made self sufficient at all levels?

A compromise to lessen PITA chores?
As long as the numbers are looked at seriously. I know that there needs be a trade off, an opportunity cost, and a "price" for fronting stronger/more defensible Holdings.
There still remains the fact that moving bulk not only "from" Holdings to Home but from Holding to Holding is a real PITA and NOT FUN. It isn't going to be more fun with more players to share the burden of doing it. Just less "unfun", less often per individual. The same amount of downer, PITA chores affecting MORE players.
Personally I am fine with a world in which most of the fighting would be about territory control without immediate tangible rewards. Some of the fighting is about interdicting "poachers" of territorial resources with some "possible" tangible immediate rewards. Finally, the occasional robber or bandit that snags me and gets something I happen to be carrying(an extreme case). I'm not sure that will be as attractive to the larger Niche crowd desired and with PVP I set myself as "Niche within Niche" or occasional PVP no more than once per week on average is plenty for me.

Gushers stealing and raiding of Holdings for Bulk resources, I feel, is going to fix much of this for those more into PVP. Raw materials for gear are always nice and Bulk will become much more valuable in the coming updates. Maybe this is a non issue. Rereading the Road Map offers quite a bit of change on the horizon. It isn't easy to take in all at once.
Do you mean that the current mechanics make it very difficult to shunt players to a one or two hex distant Res Shrine that is "neutral", "Not Your Target's hex", or "Not Your Target's Ally's Hex"?
It seems little more complex than not being able to Res in an enemy's settlement. If the foundation code is that limited and specific, I feel for you, Sir! Whatta pain in the A$$ doing anything must be!
Yes, the idea is that you have to work your way in, at least to some extent. It's a fairly simple way for us to let alliances put up layered defenses and focus on what amount to their "border" hexes, though they do have to work around the large number of hexes that can't be claimed. Combat was always meant to be much more common along an alliance's borders rather than deep within its territory.
Some of that could be easily made to work by manipulating where, how many, and who can use Res Shrines could it not?

Much more difficult to project force and win deep inside an alliance's territory if the closest shrine(for you) is on the border of the area. Not even considering delicious opportunities to be betrayed by one of your "Allies" who open their shrines for aggressors…