Welcome to the Achaea Forums! Please be sure to read the Forum Rules.

Warfare

KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
The current system seems to heavily favour small scale incursions, which have gotten progressively more challenging, entertaining, and immersive with the changes we've seen in raids what with sanctioning, tanks, fonts, guardians, etc. However, this seems small scale and somewhat unrewarding when it comes to actual wars compared to skirmishes and border raiding. Currently, lacking a warfare system beyond official declaration and public posturing, the only thing on the line are bragging rights.

I'm not sure if it's already in the works, but I think a full scale, immersive warfare system would be amazing. Cities have gates (pending the ability to lock/bar them), as well as armies, though the presence of armies only seems hinted at and rely on in-depth player roleplaying to fill them out. The only thing by, as far as I can remember, that Achaea has seen in regards to actual wars are Icon Wars, which are few and far between (maybe because they're hard to organize, or the risk far outweighs the reward, I'm not sure).

What I propose is having actual armies which can be manually marched across the lands. To start with the smallest scale, each city-state would have generated a small number of 'citizens' which can be sought out and approached by War Ministry aides and officers to attempt to conscript/recruit them. If successfully recruited, they would go to the city barracks and await to be assigned to a legion/unit. This would mean the size of an army would be directly proportionate to the amount of effort the War Ministry invested into building and maintaining it. Maintenance would be along the lines of keeping armies sufficiently supplied with city-crafted rations while away from the city.

As a legion, they cannot be attacked by other players, however, as individual soldiers stationed either in the city or in a village, they could possibly be attacked as a normal NPC (the concept being one person wouldn't be able to just obliterate an entire army, thereby throwing time and resources down the drain and creating an unbalanced conflict system). Legions would be marched room by room via manual player-based orders from War aides/officers of a certain rank. They would have the ability to be marched to and stationed in villages and thereby offer the potential of threading together a network of influence which could possibly yield better relations with those villages (based on length of occupation), resulting in building reporte with the villages which may eventually lead to better commodity opportunities for the most influential city-state to occupy the territory.

Occupations could be contested, and the tides turned in a new direction, by mustering and marching opposing armies to meet another army and either contest influence by a greater level of occupation present, or by attacking the current occupying army. The latter would generally be seen as a declaration of war, at which point the recipient of the attack could respond with official declarations and warfare would progress until either one side concedes, has lost all armies fielded, or their city has been sacked.

When in the presence of moving armies in the field, city enlisted Soldiers and members of the War Ministry will be open to attack by Soldiers from another city which has -mutual- hostile status declared, or are at war with each other. Armies have the option of marching on other cities, given they are of sufficient strength, and if lead well enough can breach a city and move towards securing and sacking assets such as that city's commodity resources.

I think this would add a more dynamic and immersive experience towards large scale conflict to match how large Achaea is, offering long term military engagements reliant on planning and execution to compliment short term raids, which rely largely on the same. There would be a bigger goal to work towards besides just destroying rooms and inconveniencing people who move through them for a couple of days, the risk and reward being equal to the scale of the engagement.

This is something I've been thinking about a lot over the years, and while it is a very significant proposition in terms of complexity and size, I feel it would be very rewarding and add a new and interactive aspect towards developing warfare and large scale conflict in Achaea.



Ethoas
«13

Comments

  • SantarSantar Member Posts: 2,382 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Kresslack said:


    tl;dr What I propose is having actual armies which can be manually marched across the lands. 




    image

    Tael
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Santar said:
    Kresslack said:


    tl;dr What I propose is having actual armies which can be manually marched across the lands. 




    Pretty much, yeah. I should have put that in at the end, but I got a little carried away I suppose.


  • TaelTael Member Posts: 1,197 @ - Epic Achaean
    edited November 2014
    I like the idea of wars being fought largely strategically moving troops around, without the ability of players to directly decide the outcome via combat. Give cities equal strategic resources and Ashtan won't be able to just steamroll everyone, which would be (and, to some extent, is) boring. Treating it more as a big game of Risk actually seems like a good solution, particularly since all of the cities are implied to have giant populations anyway (justifying them all having armies of roughly similar size), regardless of the difference in their adventurer populations (which are a tiny fraction of the total). That aspect combined with having things take place over a longer period of time also avoids the problem of "scheduling" wars that we ran into with icon conflicts.

    I'm not as sure about the mechanisms of maintaining and recruiting NPC soldiers (or rather, the ability to interfere with those mechanisms). The more you build in ways that adventurers can impact the war directly rather than via strategic movement of troops, the more risk there is that Ashtan gets to win any war they want whenever they want (using Ashtan as an example, but it would be just as problematic if another city gained a similar population of combatants).

    But ultimately I don't think the problem is coming up with a warfare system, even if I think this proposal has some nicer features than most of the proposals I've seen.

    I think the problem has always been coming up with meaningful outcomes.

    Let's say Ashtan declares war on Targossas. Let's even assume that the war system is designed in such a way that strategic play is more important than weight of numbers, so the outcome isn't quite as predetermined as a lot of raids are.

    What happens when one of the cities wins? Do they get to occupy the other? Do things in the conquered city eventually just go back to normal? If this is a long-term thing, the reward needs to be substantial or no city will generally bother. But if losing the war stings too much, the losing city is likely to lose the people with the best chance of giving them hope of fighting back in the future. And if the reward is just comms or something like that, then you incentivise going to war for reasons that aren't particularly RP-justified. Which is already going to be a problem because several cities in the game inherently possess justification for perpetual war.

    If you found some way to solve those problems, I do think it'd be a really neat addition. I've always thought that the game could use more mechanics for these grander sort of storylines - we get such large-scale storylines from time to time in the form of long events, but things are always more interesting when players can create and drive narratives, and city conflict has always been a place where a lot of those narratives arise.

    And I could see building a lot of compelling stuff into this too if done well. Imagine if moving the troops took time and involved NPCs moving between rooms and passing along the orders - orders that could be spied upon, giving the people who have always wanted the game to offer more opportunity for espionage something to do and letting the opposing commander respond to enemy troop movements sooner. Or imagine if there were infrastructure that raids could actually target, like a room that resulted in the city being unable to move their troops until the room is repaired? There are certainly alluring dimensions to the whole thing if the fundamental problems are solved.
  • TaelTael Member Posts: 1,197 @ - Epic Achaean
    I could also see having a system that is mostly this strategic stuff, but with punctuated transition to more adventurer-centric conflict, like a system where an enemy city managing to get their troops to your gates over the course of an IG year culminates in an actual siege akin to icon conflict - if something were leading up to those conflicts and they were theoretically preventable, I think you would get a lot of the positive things people liked about icon warfare without a lot of the negative aspects like the necessity of arbitrary scheduling, inability to predict when an attempt would be made, etc.

    I could actually see something like that being really cool, if the problem of substantive rewards were solved.
  • MannimarMannimar Member Posts: 973
    Once upon a time this was a thing, now it's not. I don't know why, but I know there used to be a help file on it. Now I don't know where that file is.
    Blujixapug
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I think the most practical way to approach winning such a campaign would be to put it (mostly) in the hands of the playerbase and people that run the cities rather than making it it a basic game mechanic. For instance, if Mhaldor stations legions in Blackrock or a small village and Targossas marches over an army and attacks it/decimates it, this creates conflict and the potential for escalation of a more long term nature.

    So say in retaliation, Mhaldor marches armies to either meet its enemies on the field where they were attacked, or they march armies to other locations where Targossas has legions stationed and attacks them. That line of progression opens up a lot tactically and puts a strategic spin on the idea rather than having it be about who has the bigger army or the most enlisted Soldiers in the city.

    So Mhaldor and Targossas start moving their armies across the land attacking other's assets (villages either under protection and allied to the city-state either by alliance or militaristic influence) and legions until it eventually progresses into one side conceding on the field, both sides working out a truce, or one side moving aggressively across the hypothetical board and making an attempt to breach and then ransack a city.

    There doesn't need to be just one end result if it's put primarily in the hands of the city leader(s) and their respective War ministries. This allows them to develop a strategy that suits their goals, and determine whether or not the campaign should proceed if it's doing well, or whether to consider conceding victory and withdrawing from the field in that particular campaign would be more prudent.

     So say Targossas bests Mhaldor on the field. They still  need to best Mhaldor at their own gates, and breach the city. Once in the city, they would need to win their way to say the city Council area or Commodities shop and secure it, effectively 'ransacking' the city. The two cities would then discuss terms of ending the engagement, and what (if any) reparations need be paid to officially end the war and have enemy forces withdrawn from the city. 

    This would also give more credence to the ability of city-states for form alliances with each other, should they desire to, and join forces against common enemies, should they desire to. Think of how a lot of the CTF's typically go. Alliances can be fickle and sometimes the proposals of alliances out rightly rejected in favour of standing alone. It would place an emphasis on diplomacy and strategy over the brute force factor that raids primarily rely on, even with mechanics such as Sanctioned raids and tanks.

    TL;DR: Cities would duke it out in the field via legion placement and engagement, effectively aiming for moving across the field to the enemy city, which they would then have to contest for and breach. Once breached, they could 'sack' the city and bring the campaign to an end with reparations being paid to the victor, negotiated between the parties involved.


  • MannimarMannimar Member Posts: 973
    @Tecton should have the old help war file perhaps @Sena or someone that logs everything, but this is what the wiki says war was

    The Ministry of War is responsible for all matters of warfare within a city. The sole exception to this is enlistment, which any citizen may perform.

    It is up to the Minister and his aides to capture territory, and plant the glorious flag of their homeland upon foreign shores. Expansion means prosperity, while contraction can mean poverty. Of course, a balance has to be struck between ploys to gain territory, and the cost of troops. No nation can afford to fight forever.



  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    edited November 2014
    That makes sense. It just seems like for as large as Achaea is as an environment, the conflict seems on a substantially small scale. Mhaldor's most recent war with Eleusis basically boiled down to a public pissing match with the high points being extended city raids and the low points being individual people just getting ganked while hunting. And at the end of it all, Eleusis basically conceded but stated nothing would change. So outside of temporarily having a room destroyed, and experience gains associated with destroying those rooms, the level of risk and reward seem to be disproportionate. There's rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force and is able to dig in during a raid. Hopefully one day there will be a way to add more depth to the whole experience, which is what this was aimed at doing.

    Edit: I don't know how practical this would be, but what if cities which got ransacked are still fully operations, but would be under a certain level of influence in which a marginal tax was levied on the city until a designated occupation period ended, which could be ended early by conceding and agreeing to pay reparations?

    Additionally, anyone who wanted to participate in such an event could enlist in the city army as they do now, and train in the tactics regarding troop movement, occupation, etc. Not to mention attacking enemy soldiers while they're trying to march armies across the land. Just some thoughts, even though it seems as if though this has already been fully thought out and ruled as impractical for Achaea.


  • SarapisSarapis Member, Administrator Posts: 3,398 Achaean staff
    Kresslack said:
     There's rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force and is able to dig in during a raid. 


    Additionally, anyone who wanted to participate in such an event could enlist in the city army as they do now, and train in the tactics regarding troop movement, occupation, etc. Not to mention attacking enemy soldiers while they're trying to march armies across the land.
    I'm not at all trying to give you a hard time, but if the first line "rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force" is a complaint, you're suggesting doing exactly the same thing with the second section. You're suggesting that numbers should matter so that people who want to participate can.
    TaelSherazad
  • XithXith Member Posts: 2,602 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Also this stuff:
    http://forums.achaea.com/discussion/486

    Not warfare but a siege system.
    I like my steak like I like my Magic cards: mythic rare.
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Sarapis said:
    Kresslack said:
     There's rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force and is able to dig in during a raid. 


    Additionally, anyone who wanted to participate in such an event could enlist in the city army as they do now, and train in the tactics regarding troop movement, occupation, etc. Not to mention attacking enemy soldiers while they're trying to march armies across the land.
    I'm not at all trying to give you a hard time, but if the first line "rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force" is a complaint, you're suggesting doing exactly the same thing with the second section. You're suggesting that numbers should matter so that people who want to participate can.
    It wasn't a complaint, just a statement, not necessarily untrue. And the second suggestion wouldn't necessarily hinge the entirety of whether or not one side can muster a huge player based force as much as it would be strategically moving and placing your armies.


  • BlujixapugBlujixapug Member Posts: 1,833 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Wars are terrible because there is no win condition. You either force the other side to concede by making the game unplayably unfun for them (aka griefing), or else have an OOC conversation leader to leader and try to work out your own parameters for battles and victory - which is still a failure of the war system, because you're forced to work completely outside it. So some kind of system is IMO not just a good idea, but necessary.

    The worst thing about raids is repetition leading to burnout, because they're the best conflict system around, beating out random ganks, Icons, shrines, ships, worldgames, arenas, and CTFs. If there was anything else worthwhile to do but raid, I'm sure people would do it. I think Achaea badly needs a new, meaningful, org-based conflict system, whether it's a full-on war system or something else.

    But, yeah, no easy way to do a war system. Timezones and balancing player numbers will always be a problem. Attempting to integrate it with PVP will be a problem due to the previous sentence.
    image
    MelodieVansittart
  • VansittartVansittart Member Posts: 232 ✭✭✭✭ - Eminent
    @Sarapis, and @Blujixapug both make excellent points.  It's a massive shame, but a war system is just really hard to make work in a way that's fun for everyone.  The only way I see it working is Divine/RP-led so that a clearly defined event is put in place with clear win conditions - and even those are really hard to balance and result in a lot of whinging (cf Shala-Khulia).

    Kudos to anyone who comes up with a system that can get round the issues that @Sarapis highlights, because I can't.
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    If it's reliant on being orchestrated by a Divine, that puts significant potential limitations on it because a) they're often very busy and b) there aren't that many of them. I was more trying to wrap it around whether or not it would be possible to make it more PvE than PvP. If General A marches an army to a village, if General B is online he can certainly just try to kill General A to deter such attempts. Eventually, however, General A is going to find a way to move their armies and the only way to halt that progression would be to field armies of your own to oppose their path. It provides a clearly defined conflict.

    "If their armies get to this point, they can capture this village or attack our armies or even lay siege to our city. We have to field armies of our own to push them back and protect our interests."

    Having personal soldiers that people could bring up and have follow them around like Alchemists in Icon Wars feels like it would be a smaller scale, even if you could cut your way into a city with a group of them and lead them to the city commodity shop and sack it. If you die and your soldiers die, that's it, was a valiant effort. I guess I'm just wishing there was a conflict system that was more extensive and took time and actual planning, like a chess match.

    "Oh, I moved my armies here and he marched his upriver there and completely skirted around our forces. In hindsight, I should have moved my armies there to force him into a more inconvenient path across land."

    Warfare systems are very complicated, that's why few games actually have working ones, same as Seafaring systems. I personally like the Seafaring system in Achaea overall, for what it is (minus chops, seriously fuck chops), even though it's not perfect; how we adapt to the parts that don't work at the moment is part of what makes it great. Like I said, I guess I'm just wishing there was something more in depth than raids, like Blujixapug mentioned.
     
    At the very least, what's the chances of getting a Risk-like board game where you play across the Achaean map as a city-state? :P


  • SarapisSarapis Member, Administrator Posts: 3,398 Achaean staff
    Kresslack said:
    Sarapis said:
    Kresslack said:
     There's rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force and is able to dig in during a raid. 


    Additionally, anyone who wanted to participate in such an event could enlist in the city army as they do now, and train in the tactics regarding troop movement, occupation, etc. Not to mention attacking enemy soldiers while they're trying to march armies across the land.
    I'm not at all trying to give you a hard time, but if the first line "rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force" is a complaint, you're suggesting doing exactly the same thing with the second section. You're suggesting that numbers should matter so that people who want to participate can.
    It wasn't a complaint, just a statement, not necessarily untrue. And the second suggestion wouldn't necessarily hinge the entirety of whether or not one side can muster a huge player based force as much as it would be strategically moving and placing your armies.
    But then you're talking about a system that is only meaningful to and involves the handful of players who can move troops and make those strategic decisions.
    Xith
  • AerekAerek East Tennessee, USAMember Posts: 1,818 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Giant chessboards should be installed in every city's War Room. Declaring war creates a new game between the two cities, and Ministers of War get to take one turn per month from their respective War Rooms. Award arbitrary spoils of war upon victory. Clear win conditions, strategy favored over pure numbers or PK ability, wouldn't disrupt the day-to-day affairs of the game. Give the pieces Achaean- or City-flavored names for maximum effect. "Move the Runewardens to D4, the Warlord will have to move his Corsairs or risk check..."

    Solidifies the armchair general archetype of RP, as we confer with our aides to make intelligent moves. Creates realistic politics as the military minds argue the validity of those moves with civilian leaders that don't understand chess. Allows us to re-enact the bunker scene from Downfall when it all goes wrong.
    -- Grounded in but one perspective, what we perceive is an exaggeration of the truth.
    MannimarNimHerenicusEthoas
  • AodfionnAodfionn Seattle, WAMember Posts: 1,218 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I, too, would like an Achaea version of Starcraft. Thumbs up, Kresslack. 
    Aurora says, "Are you drunk, Aodfionn?" 

    (The Targossian Academy): Halos says, "Go on! I need to feel the wind in my hair!"


    Ernam
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Sarapis said:
    Kresslack said:
    Sarapis said:
    Kresslack said:
     There's rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force and is able to dig in during a raid. 


    Additionally, anyone who wanted to participate in such an event could enlist in the city army as they do now, and train in the tactics regarding troop movement, occupation, etc. Not to mention attacking enemy soldiers while they're trying to march armies across the land.
    I'm not at all trying to give you a hard time, but if the first line "rarely any strategy outside of who brings the stronger force" is a complaint, you're suggesting doing exactly the same thing with the second section. You're suggesting that numbers should matter so that people who want to participate can.
    It wasn't a complaint, just a statement, not necessarily untrue. And the second suggestion wouldn't necessarily hinge the entirety of whether or not one side can muster a huge player based force as much as it would be strategically moving and placing your armies.
    But then you're talking about a system that is only meaningful to and involves the handful of players who can move troops and make those strategic decisions.
    There are plenty of options to brainstorm to where it doesn't limit it to just War Ministries. However, the whole point I was trying to pitch was for long term efforts would be organized and lead by the War Ministry and the city general(s) in regards to strategizing the movement and position of armies, as well as the logistics of keeping them supplied.

    There could be, for example, instances where when two enemy armies encounter one another and one is ordered to attack the other, both start going at it. Those who are enlisted in the city army would be notified of the engagement and be able to go to the location to take part in a PvP version of the engagement (maybe something like a small version of capture the flag. Capture the banner?) while the EvE side (army vs army) was taking place as well. Sort of like being in the moment. 

    What determines if an army wins an engagement would be effected by size, training (if a training option for armies as a unit wanted to be included), and maybe some algorithm to factor in the environment. It would be neat if there were a way to offer landscape positions that armies can be positioned at (hills, ruins, bridges, etc) if arriving first to get a marginal strategical advantage, which would require either a greater force or greater cunning by the enemy to unseat.

    That would give players who are enlisted in the army the sense of being involved in the actual war and in the moment, while also giving life to the reality of city armies without them just being an imaginative thing that we all just assume is there and roleplay around.


  • SarapisSarapis Member, Administrator Posts: 3,398 Achaean staff
    Kresslack said:
    There are plenty of options to brainstorm to where it doesn't limit it to just War Ministries. However, the whole point I was trying to pitch was for long term efforts would be organized and lead by the War Ministry and the city general(s) in regards to strategizing the movement and position of armies, as well as the logistics of keeping them supplied.

    There could be, for example, instances where when two enemy armies encounter one another and one is ordered to attack the other, both start going at it. Those who are enlisted in the city army would be notified of the engagement and be able to go to the location to take part in a PvP version of the engagement (maybe something like a small version of capture the flag. Capture the banner?) while the EvE side (army vs army) was taking place as well. Sort of like being in the moment. 

    What determines if an army wins an engagement would be effected by size, training (if a training option for armies as a unit wanted to be included), and maybe some algorithm to factor in the environment. It would be neat if there were a way to offer landscape positions that armies can be positioned at (hills, ruins, bridges, etc) if arriving first to get a marginal strategical advantage, which would require either a greater force or greater cunning by the enemy to unseat.

    That would give players who are enlisted in the army the sense of being involved in the actual war and in the moment, while also giving life to the reality of city armies without them just being an imaginative thing that we all just assume is there and roleplay around.
    Now we're back to timezone manipulation and the A-team winning by dint of sheer PvP power, or else the PvP part doesn't matter and we're back to it being mainly about a handful of people in the war ministry battling each other. I'd encourage you to sit down and actually write a design that doesn't fall victim to the problems I listed in the post above. I'd be thrilled if you managed it but you're running smack into the same problems.
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Sarapis said:
    Kresslack said:
    There are plenty of options to brainstorm to where it doesn't limit it to just War Ministries. However, the whole point I was trying to pitch was for long term efforts would be organized and lead by the War Ministry and the city general(s) in regards to strategizing the movement and position of armies, as well as the logistics of keeping them supplied.

    There could be, for example, instances where when two enemy armies encounter one another and one is ordered to attack the other, both start going at it. Those who are enlisted in the city army would be notified of the engagement and be able to go to the location to take part in a PvP version of the engagement (maybe something like a small version of capture the flag. Capture the banner?) while the EvE side (army vs army) was taking place as well. Sort of like being in the moment. 

    What determines if an army wins an engagement would be effected by size, training (if a training option for armies as a unit wanted to be included), and maybe some algorithm to factor in the environment. It would be neat if there were a way to offer landscape positions that armies can be positioned at (hills, ruins, bridges, etc) if arriving first to get a marginal strategical advantage, which would require either a greater force or greater cunning by the enemy to unseat.

    That would give players who are enlisted in the army the sense of being involved in the actual war and in the moment, while also giving life to the reality of city armies without them just being an imaginative thing that we all just assume is there and roleplay around.
    Now we're back to timezone manipulation and the A-team winning by dint of sheer PvP power, or else the PvP part doesn't matter and we're back to it being mainly about a handful of people in the war ministry battling each other. I'd encourage you to sit down and actually write a design that doesn't fall victim to the problems I listed in the post above. I'd be thrilled if you managed it but you're running smack into the same problems.  

    I'm almost positive there's a workable solution for that thing, because it would be an issue. So...with that in mind...




    NocrothBronislav
  • AmarillysAmarillys Member Posts: 797 @ - Epic Achaean
    Sarapis said:

    I've got ideas for possibly doing a system that involves troops that are loyal to individual players rather than cities that may come to fruition someday, but we'll see. 


    Yes please.



  • ValariaValaria Member Posts: 400 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    Amarillys said:
    Sarapis said:

    I've got ideas for possibly doing a system that involves troops that are loyal to individual players rather than cities that may come to fruition someday, but we'll see. 


    Yes please.

    so are you saying i can bribe the troop?



    2015/01/12 Tecton, the Terraformer has bestowed His divine favour upon you. It will last for approximately 1 Achaean month.
  • XithXith Member Posts: 2,602 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    The thing about war and conquest is it couldn't come down to one defining battle due to timezones and stuff. But if over the course of a few years they could strike enough strategic blows to somehow gain victory and then occupation of an enemy city, that would be something. The best we have at the moment is room destruction, which is repaired fairly quickly and doesn't allow for more than a couple rooms to be disrupted.

    NPC wars kind of just please the people directing the troops. Are you gonna hold a citywide referendum for every troop movement? Probably  not. So at most you get like 6 people making use of this, maybe with the counsel of city leadership too but it would have to move at such a pace that it's like turn-based troop movements.

    The only thing I could see is maybe sending soldiers (or something else) to occupy denizen city-states in a way that grants your citizens bonuses in those areas or something, constantly contesting different areas of the map. Sending soldiers to contest an area of the forest or something, where they stay camped, waiting to only duel enemy soldier NPCs.

    It just wouldn't serve much purpose beyond being fun to do.
    Play my Mayhem game instead ;)
    I like my steak like I like my Magic cards: mythic rare.
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    @Xith:

    [spoiler][quote=kresslack]

    There could be, for example, instances where when two enemy armies encounter one another and one is ordered to attack the other, both start going at it. Those who are enlisted in the city army would be notified of the engagement and be able to go to the location to take part in a PvP version of the engagement (maybe something like a small version of capture the flag. Capture the banner?) while the EvE side (army vs army) was taking place as well. Sort of like being in the moment.

    That would give players who are enlisted in the army the sense of being involved in the actual war and in the moment, while also giving life to the reality of city armies without them just being an imaginative thing that we all just assume is there and roleplay around.[/quote][/spoiler]




  • TaelTael Member Posts: 1,197 @ - Epic Achaean
    edited November 2014
    Aerek said:
    Giant chessboards should be installed in every city's War Room. Declaring war creates a new game between the two cities, and Ministers of War get to take one turn per month from their respective War Rooms. Award arbitrary spoils of war upon victory. Clear win conditions, strategy favored over pure numbers or PK ability, wouldn't disrupt the day-to-day affairs of the game. Give the pieces Achaean- or City-flavored names for maximum effect. "Move the Runewardens to D4, the Warlord will have to move his Corsairs or risk check..."

    Solidifies the armchair general archetype of RP, as we confer with our aides to make intelligent moves. Creates realistic politics as the military minds argue the validity of those moves with civilian leaders that don't understand chess. Allows us to re-enact the bunker scene from Downfall when it all goes wrong.
    While the outcome problem is still a problem, I actually think this is the right idea, and it was the part of the OP I liked.

    Sarapis makes the point that it would be problematic to make a system that not many people end up participating in, but I think maybe people are overlooking that it isn't just about participating directly - it's about making the world feel vibrant, like players are actually driving large-scale events rather than running largely static cities that engage in conflict that ultimately has very little lasting effect without admin there to drive a real, large-scale narrative.

    It's not so much about everyone getting to play in a war as it is about everyone getting to play in a world where a war is happening, where wars can happen in a meaningful sense. Specifically a world where meaningful, large-scale conflict can happen organically without admin intervention.

    To put it another way: I do not and probably will not ever engage in jousting. But my experience of the game is made much richer for its inclusion. The fact that only a small part of the game's population can engage in it is not as important as the fact that it's part of the world.

    Obviously a war system like that isn't something that months and months and months of coder time should be spent on, but I don't think a relatively simple system that only a handful of ministers actively engage with regularly is actually a bad way of doing it so long as it's kept relatively simple (like a game of Risk or a game of Chess with periodically regenerating pieces). Add in some ways to make the game of Risk the ministers are playing actually visible in the world (have the board correspond to actual locations and have troops show up in various rooms and battles leave behind visible markers), and I think it would be a very worthwhile addition.

    Then add on top of that the fact that the associated rooms would actually be a valuable strategic target for raids, and you have more player-involvement. And if you did something like having a successful war culminate in an icon-war-like siege and I think you would have something pretty magnificent.

    The siege itself might be a foregone conclusion based on weight of numbers and the like, but that seems a lot more acceptable when the opportunity to conduct a siege has to be won via a game that isn't based on weight of numbers. Likewise, having a visible lead-up to a siege would pretty seriously mitigate the problem of timing that icon warfare tried to solve using specified windows of opportunity.

    And if these wars were actually made long-term and the system were balanced such that actually reaching the siege was a relatively rare occurrence (and they should be so balanced), I think that working out ad-hoc "outcomes" between the leaders (and maybe with admin assistance) might actually be doable.

    It could look something like this:

    (1) Ministers are playing what amounts to a game of Risk (or Chess, with pieces that periodically regenerate after being captured) - they do this through map like a lower-resolution wilderness map that is accessed through one or more city offices. Maybe with separate Naval and Land aspects (two boards that interact at their edges or something like that), but still a very simple game that doesn't take much effort to design or balance or implement. Maybe eventually add in some means for other players to help in relatively small ways (and raids could be used to disable associated rooms), but mostly this would just be an activity for the ministers. The game should be slow-paced (victory should only be possible over the course of IG years) and should tend toward stalemate (victory should be unlikely even over the course of several IG years).

    (2) Make the movements of armies and of battles visible in the world. Battles leave behind rubble or fires (Eleusis might have a vested interest in keeping battles out of the forests?). Armies are visible as "items" in rooms that correspond to spaces on the game board.

    (3) Add a means of MARKing enemy armies in the actual world. Marking an enemy army "item" in a room updates their location on the ministers' game boards (enemy army positions do not automatically update when enemies make moves). This gives information-gatherers something to do and it's not a particularly annoying thing since armies move slowly enough that you don't need to sweep the whole world, just the places near where the armies last were. Perhaps MARKing enemies creates an item in your inventory that has to be turned into a room in the city to update the game board, another room that could be destroyed and would disable the ability to update the display of enemy army positions on the game board (forcing people to either move blindly or try to keep track of the changes in the board state manually). To make it even less of a hassle, maybe a separate room automatically generates a report on which armies have moved (so you only need to go check those), a report that a serpent could go into an enemy city and read.

    (4) Once one side wins, a countdown begins until a siege takes place. The siege works identically to icon combat, but what must be destroyed is the gates, not an icon. If we're feeling particularly adventurous, try to find a way to work ships into this since I know a lot of people have always wanted more excuses for naval combat.

    (5) When a successful siege is completed, leaders actually conduct RP to resolve things. If necessary, admin help out. This should be rare enough that it wouldn't be too much of a problem - the conclusion of a major war should be rare, something for the history books, not just another raid.

    I think something along those lines could add a lot to the game (in particular to the game's atmosphere) without introducing too much complexity that most players don't interact with. Speaking as someone who would never be one of those ministers even, I would love to see something like that.
  • TaelTael Member Posts: 1,197 @ - Epic Achaean
    edited November 2014
    Since I can't edit that post, a couple of other things:

    (1) Since the icon combat system is already in place, adapting it to the siege system ideally involves minimal coder effort. And while there were a lot of things people didn't like about icon conflict (several of them fixed in this situation - no arbitrary windows of opportunity in which you have to be ready to defend, and for a siege to even begin, you have to lose a game that doesn't depend on city combatant population), there was a lot about them that people did like.

    (2) To people bothered by the notion that there would be armies visible in rooms that can't be attacked by player attacks, there's already precedent for this: cities are filled with people described in room descriptions that can't be interacted with and "items" representing groups of people that can't be attacked have precedent already too (like the big torches-and-pitchforks Ashtani mobs from some events in the past).

    (3) To the extent that sieges would be more disruptive than raids already are, again, the idea is that they would only occur very rarely.
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,303 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    It's not so much about everyone getting to play in a war as it is about everyone getting to play in a world where a war is happening, where wars can happen in a meaningful sense. Specifically a world where meaningful, large-scale conflict can happen organically without admin intervention.

    This pretty much reflects what I was thinking when I posted this idea. I'm of the opinion that it should be something that doesn't rely on an admin or divine to jump in and either help wrap up or get started; these are things that cities should be able to reasonably start and conclude on their own.

    The Risk approach was actually something I was going to put in, but only insomuch that it would allow generals and ministers to view army placements and terrain while in the War Room, effectively allowing a campaign to be planned and not just blindly executed. They decide what armies of what size need to go where, dispatch those orders to their officers in the city army, and those officers work with the rest of the army to orchestrate the mustering and marching of the individual armies across the field (the field being mainland).

    I'm tying into my official proposal (not sure when it will be done but I'll be working on it regularly) the use of Scouts which would report information from the field back to the ministry for assessment and offer some sort of real-time progressive experience.

    Part of my concept is to make this more than just moving pieces from one side to the other. It needs to be more immersive and meaningful than that, in my opinion. Thus, my earlier mention of the ability to have armies stationed in certain areas such as villages (any place that has a commodity shop really), offering the ability to create a network of influence based on linking those points together with your armies. Build a big enough network, and it could offer certain rewards, such as slightly quicker troop movement through throughout that network.

    This is something that should generate long-term, strategic conflict because opposing armies can come in at any time and disrupt a network of influence just by having a presence in the area (they don't even have to attack, just have more troops in the area than anyone else). Naturally, that will eventually create conflict on its own, at which point the order might be given for one army to move against another.

    I'm going to be working on this in-depth and extensively over the next few months. There are countless possibilities but they will need to be practical and work towards actually addressing the issues @Sarapis brought up before anything else.



  • BlujixapugBlujixapug Member Posts: 1,833 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Tael said:

    (2) To people bothered by the notion that there would be armies visible in rooms that can't be attacked by player attacks, there's already precedent for this: cities are filled with people described in room descriptions that can't be interacted with and "items" representing groups of people that can't be attacked have precedent already too (like the big torches-and-pitchforks Ashtani mobs from some events in the past).
    Let them be attacked by players - but have them retaliate with instakills. You're attacking a legion of, what, 100 highly trained soldiers? With dragonsbane enchantments? u ded son.
    image
Sign In to Comment.