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The future of the Pirates of Meropis?

JinsunJinsun TN, USAMember Posts: 2,939 @@ - Legendary Achaean
Hi everyone,

Wasn't sure where to put this thread. If you want a piracy hate thread, just go to rants. Basically, the Pirates of Meropis as an organization, for better or not, good reasons or otherwise is struggling to exist as an entity. No city really wants it, and Ashtan has been very patient to deal with it for several OOC years. There are a few issues that I see on why it's difficult to maintain and keep membership:

  1. Cities don't want their ships lumped in or being targeted.
  2. People in Pirates are heavily targeted, right wrong or indifferent.
  3. People think ship combat is unfair and expensive for the punitive end of restocking/salvaging,etc.
Because of this, it's reached a point that the only way I can see it continuing is really as a rogue only organization, but again, that means people risking everything for almost no reward -and- giving up their citizenship, so it would likely die then anyway. I'm seriously to the brink of just closing shop because it's exhausting to constantly be the bad guy and be hated by even the people in my city for it.

Does anyone have any ideas or ways to change things? I don't want the seas to just be everyone afk fishing and auto seamonster hunting and I don't want to lose the option of being a fun swashbuckling pirate, but there's almost no love or support in this area and maybe it's time to die.

Thanks,
Jin
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Comments

  • ArchaeonArchaeon Ur mums house lolMember Posts: 489 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    you just gotta get yourself a nice set of hater-blocker shades and then continue on what you're doing.
  • ShirszaeShirszae Santo DomingoMember Posts: 3,287 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    edited August 4
    Making it not be such a drag to recover ship and restock and retrain crew would go a way to make things better and people more willing, but I still think there's a fundamental flaw with the way piracy is supposed to operate. 

    The most important detail, I think, is that the separation between sea and land doesnt presently work because while people are not allowed to seek the usual retaliation for being sunk, they can still enemy pirates to their orgs, and impose heavy fines or whatever to make up for it.  This, however, while is something, its not really something that is all that satisfying when compared with more direct vengeance, be it through a champion or through the person itself.

    I think it'd be interesting if cities were discouraged/disabled from manually enemying for piracy charges, and instead a temporal ban of sorts would go up in a city when a city vessel is sunk, in effect being mechanically enemied for a small timeframe in which any manner of retribution was fair play, be it on land on sea.

    However, that would probably prove rather unwieldy.


    And you won't understand the cause of your grief...


    ...But you'll always follow the voices beneath.

  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,312 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I've always been of the opinion that the best way for a group such as the PoM to survive and flourish is to a) operate completely independent of any city-state and b) recruit and maintain it's ranks exclusively from the rogues in the land.

    The former would be much easier to manage if the latter were not so difficult. Not only is Seafaring typically pretty expensive to get into, but lesson and gold wise, but a lot of people rely on cities for education when it comes to sailing, a well as some form of protection.

    Honestly, I think it grew really big, and there was a time when that could be supported, but it might be worth going back to basics and simplifying things down.

    There used to be a heavy emphasis when it was last heavily active to have as many ships on the water as possible, to make it seem as if there was more as a presence. This was also because a lot of people wanted to be their on Captains instead of simply crewing on a ship.

    Probably the most fun I had in the PoM (or any Seafaring instance) was having a ship full of people, willing and ready to work together, and follow one Captain. It not only makes for a very efficient use of a ship, but it builds the kind of comradarie and RP opportunities that will often draw more people to it (like it did when I first started playing Achaea).


    Truax
  • ShirszaeShirszae Santo DomingoMember Posts: 3,287 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I think there's not enough incentive to be crew nowadays. Back then there was always the danger of being forceboarded, which kinda made you want to have people with you always, and made people want to be with you because there was always the possibility of some direct action. Nowadays, Seamonsters exist, and some of the bigger one can be better tackled (or require) a crew, but the pay when divided is rather abysmal, and at least for me tackling those has never felt worth it beyond events and the like.


    And you won't understand the cause of your grief...


    ...But you'll always follow the voices beneath.

    WaayenLaedhaSiduriShimi
  • MorsulMorsul Member Posts: 112 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    Confused, aren't pirates essentially sea thieves? So arguing for fair treatment seems a bit entitled, "i want my cake and eat it too" kinda thing.
  • JinsunJinsun TN, USAMember Posts: 2,939 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Morsul said:
    Confused, aren't pirates essentially sea thieves? So arguing for fair treatment seems a bit entitled, "i want my cake and eat it too" kinda thing.
    No one is asking for fair treatment. Trying to figure out any way to be vital and even exist or should I just close up and let it fade into oblivion, which is what I'm leaning to.
    image
    Siduri
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,312 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I've suggested stuff like that a few times, and it would really bring the Seas into balance with the rest of the conflict system across the board, in my opinion. I've no idea why the Seas are treated as this pseudo treacherous plane, but it's a large contributing factor towards why people often don't want to get too involved with them.


    LennYselaZbaco
  • SkyeSkye The Duchess BellatereMember, Seafaring Liason Posts: 3,085 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    More on topic, I think what you can do instead of beating people('s ships) up for money is run a protection racket instead. That's not to say that you beat them up if they don't pay up, but you sail convoy (or crew with them) and keep other nuisances off them.

    Maybe you only want to run your protection for certain routes so you don't get made to sail out to the middle of nowhere, but so long as people are paying you guys, they can get you to beat off things like other ship attackers or angry triton citadels getting pissed off at people fishing in their waters. It's not as exciting as having your pick of free range targets, but it will probably build up some good will.

    It's still probably an endeavour better carried out as rogues, but you could probably continue it as Ashtani as well. 


    Lenn
  • RackhamRackham Member Posts: 80 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    Getting enemied for sinking somebody makes perfect sense. Even if you mechanically take that aspect away, actions have consequences, and cities will just resort to blacklisting you in other ways. I think the methods people go through to ration the blame are a little nuts. It should be as simple as flags. Pirate flag sank a Cyrene flag? Cyrene enemies pirate. City vs city? Check the flags. No flag? No recourse...

    Now, I think this whole thing with salvage and token costs could be addressed, certainly... But it was an issue when same port personal trades were still a thing, so I don't think 'cost' is the big deal here. A loss is a loss and it doesn't feel good, especially when you get beaten on your own by simply a larger group of people. Can't imagine a fix for that though.

    But the ocean is open pk, because of the potential gain. Seamonstering and fishing and the various islands and trades.... There's the ability to profit, and that's why there's risk. But nobody seems to like the risk portion of that tradeoff! So what's the solution? Get rid of the open pk, and instill a gold cap like normal hunting?

    I don't have any answers, really. Maybe it really is time to end the piracy aspect here. Then the people who want to quest on islands, and the people who want to park on top of seamonster nests, and the people who want to do trades, can all be happy. But if there was a way to ration out the conflict better, I'd prefer it that way. In the same way that it's generally uncalled for to bring 20 people into a city to raid on off peak hours, there's gotta be a fine line of 'sportsmanship' that can be set with ocean pk.
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,312 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    That's sorta already their standard practice, it's just that it doesn't really have that much appeal now that seamonsters spawn in designated zones and there are an abundance of threats on sea otherwise. It's essentially just turned into the standard extortion racket of "Pay us and nothing bad will happen to you, by us".


  • SkyeSkye The Duchess BellatereMember, Seafaring Liason Posts: 3,085 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    yeah I know, I'm suggesting the removal of the 'by us' part and just go for the 'pay us so all the other bad things aren't as likely to happen to you'. And also to try and alleviate the 'I can't find people to crew with me' part of the problem. They're essentially crew for hire. it doesn't have to be a flat rate, it could also be a cut of the profits, or you have to provide them with bait to fish with you. 


  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,312 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    I think one thing that would help a lot is getting back to a focus on RP opposed to profit. Make it less about always having to patrol the waters for potential extortion targets, or someone to sink, and sail with group goals in mind, take the opportunities as they come.


  • WaayenWaayen Member Posts: 13
    edited August 5
    Lack of combat resolution and the expensiveness aside...what exactly can a pirate "pirate" in the seas? Extortion, nice! Assuming the person is carrying a lot of gold. Might be cheaper to just get sunk and call it a day. What else? Oh, oh, you guys got cargo! Wait, which port and how far along within the trade route? Dang it, you're still in the beginning? I'll tag along to babysit to ensure I get my cut while I don't kill you at sea effectively stranding myself since you'll be pissed at me. =)=)=) Seriously, come back after I've "taught" you a lesson icly. :/

    Aside from being hindered by the system in place, there isn't really much going for a pirate out at sea other than the roleplay value. That is it really. I'm all for pirates and rogues creating conflict along with cities as well. Unfortunately, creating conflict is tricky given the current atmosphere. I say atmosphere purely because once someone deviates from the status quo....they get dog piled on by the others for doing so. My only experience as a pirate was being a non-pirate pirate in an mmo game. The faction I was apart of didn't punish me for pirating my own or the opposite faction cause it's the sea. The sea was lawless. The pirate faction was its own thing and didn't require you to be apart of it to be a pirate. The oceans were very diverse in the type of play you can engage in.

    From being purely traders to escorting said traders to pirates attempting to rob to an all-out factional warfare was awesome to participate in. Turned in stolen cargo? Only got half the value of what it was worth and the other half went to its original owner(not a total lost to the owner). Going from non-pirate pirate to bodyguards for wealthy traders was very lucrative for me and my guild. If you played ArcheAge before it became p2w, you'll know what I mean. This is a text-based game, yet, I feel there's room to expand to increase the risk/reward and overall fun for all parties at sea. We're just limited to what can be done at the moment.

    I've actively held my character back icly from even engaging against the pirates given how limited they are already. My first sea battle was against PoM when Artanis dragged me to fight them. It was fun at the time, but it's no fun fighting against a faction that's barely a faction to begin with for a while now. :/ Forgive any typos and such as I wrote this super late.
  • MaajidaMaajida Member Posts: 10
    I'm still really new to everything seafaring. I have some idea to help the pirate issue but I need a bit more information to suggest them because I don't know the associated costs. If this is allowed to be shared ooc, of course.

    What do pirates get when they pirate? Or what can they get, mechanically and via RP?

    What do victims stand to lose? What are the costs in resources and time?

    How long does ship combat take?

    What decides ship combat more: skill of the captain, a full crew, weapons on the ship/ship type?

    There is a new 'shipfitting' tradeskill coming out that might come into play if anyone knows what that will affect. 


  • AsmodronAsmodron Member Posts: 3,081 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Main problem isn't the act of piracy, it is ship mechanics and how frustrating they are...which is then piled up on acts of piracy.

    Until it is adjusted, I'm  not sure if anything can be done for piracy.
  • AccipiterAccipiter Member Posts: 480 ✭✭✭✭ - Eminent
    The seas being open PK is really the only way it can work. If it wasn't you would have to identify everyone on a ship and work out if you can attack them.

    I sail a reasonable amount and I don't really mind being attacked if I am out sailing around but that doesn't really happen anymore. Mostly what happens is I am engaged with a seamonster and Artanis comes around and attacks me and there isn't much I can do because the monster damage plus ballista damage with crews stopping repair burns the hull too fast. 

    The punishment for losing a ship battle isn't that bad, if you have a ship you can make back even the highest harbour salvage in like an hour anyway. The real problem is that it takes like an hour to get the boat back unless you have someone to salvage which basically means you are done sailing for the day.

    I also miss the old seafaring where people had to do stuff, it is hard to get people to come with you to do things anymore unless you are actively looking to attack something, whether it is seamonsters or other ships, because they basically just have to sit there with nothing to do. And if you are going seamonstering each person on your ship decreases the gold per hour with basically no benefit until someone comes along to attack you.

    I don't know how to make it better. The old seafaring had to change because the playerbase wasn't big enough to require multiple people on a boat, but the pendulum swung too far the other way so now there isn't anything for more than the captain to do except fire a weapon.
    Mroxyl
  • JinsunJinsun TN, USAMember Posts: 2,939 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Maajida said:
    I'm still really new to everything seafaring. I have some idea to help the pirate issue but I need a bit more information to suggest them because I don't know the associated costs. If this is allowed to be shared ooc, of course.

    What do pirates get when they pirate? Or what can they get, mechanically and via RP?

    What do victims stand to lose? What are the costs in resources and time?

    How long does ship combat take?

    What decides ship combat more: skill of the captain, a full crew, weapons on the ship/ship type?

    There is a new 'shipfitting' tradeskill coming out that might come into play if anyone knows what that will affect. 

    A few answers here:

    It depends: If it's a plunder, normally not much (Highest plunder I ever got was 200k and I gave 100 back because 100k is too much to take from anyone anyway). Or the person pays a ransom not to get plundered and sunk. I've seen ransoms go as high as 1 million, but there's really no reason for anyone to pay that much with current plunder. Most plunders are so negligible you can't even tell a difference.

    Victims lose stores, anything out in their hands (Gold, Etc), cost of replacing stores, and salvage. They can also use crew, but only if they don't have enough token stores. This usually ranges from about 30k to about 70-80k total in gold costs.

    The length of time can be anywhere from 5 minutes to an hour depending on number of ships, how it's handled, etc, etc,

    Typically the number of ships/crew members. A skilled captain can take on a few ships with marginal success if the crews are relatively unskilled and the captain is very skilled. The highest I've ever sank is 4 ships with me having a crew of 2, including myself. Those other crews were so underskilled, though. Currently, every fight is basically, Pirates vs. Cyrene and I haven't seen a fight of less than 4-5 ships in probably an OOC year.
    image
    Maajida
  • EllodinEllodin HawaiiMember, Seafaring Liason Posts: 951 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    i mean, people didn't really have to do stuff before seafaring changes. i really preferred forceboard (though obviously it had its issues and no real good counterplay, done right) because of rp/conversational ability. met some people that way.

    regardless, as much as i love all of this at times, the playerbase is already not large enough to allow for more fracturing through seafaring, relegating it it to a side game on a day-in, day-out basis. in a way, this makes the good engagements you have very meaningful, but it's challenging to be a real organization based on that, regardless of what systems you put in play.
    And as he slept he dreamed a dream, and this was his dream.
  • MorthifMorthif Member Posts: 1,719 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Ellodin said:
    i mean, people didn't really have to do stuff before seafaring changes. i really preferred forceboard (though obviously it had its issues and no real good counterplay, done right) because of rp/conversational ability. met some people that way.

    regardless, as much as i love all of this at times, the playerbase is already not large enough to allow for more fracturing through seafaring, relegating it it to a side game on a day-in, day-out basis. in a way, this makes the good engagements you have very meaningful, but it's challenging to be a real organization based on that, regardless of what systems you put in play.
    Very much this. While PoM and the Mariner's Guild each served a purpose in the past the shrinking playerbase has made it smarter to focus on city based naval forces.
  • JinsunJinsun TN, USAMember Posts: 2,939 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Morthif said:
    Ellodin said:
    i mean, people didn't really have to do stuff before seafaring changes. i really preferred forceboard (though obviously it had its issues and no real good counterplay, done right) because of rp/conversational ability. met some people that way.

    regardless, as much as i love all of this at times, the playerbase is already not large enough to allow for more fracturing through seafaring, relegating it it to a side game on a day-in, day-out basis. in a way, this makes the good engagements you have very meaningful, but it's challenging to be a real organization based on that, regardless of what systems you put in play.
    Very much this. While PoM and the Mariner's Guild each served a purpose in the past the shrinking playerbase has made it smarter to focus on city based naval forces.
    Most cities don't have dedicated or real navies. Targossas doesn't, Mhaldor really doesn't, Hashan never has had any symblance of one. Eleusis's was basically Artanis. Ashtan's has been so strictly regulated that it's not allowed to oppose the only other navy on the water, Cyrene, and has basically become a few people that go out once a year and seamonster hunt for the city.
    image
  • CailinCailin Member Posts: 350 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    As a noncombatant sailor, who sails to relax and make gold, hates loss, and doesn't like to be bothered -

    The only thing that would make me not completely hate piracy (even though I respect the RP) would be paying protection money (or just being left alone). Not on a yearly basis, as I don't sail often enough for that, but say in a case by case basis. 
     
    1. Pirate hails "fight or pay"
    2. I transfer a credit
    3. Pirate leaves
    4. I do not hire a ship to wreak vengeance, that's part of the deal. Maybe next time I ask a competent friend to come along in their own ship if I don't want to pay.

    I think it would also be interesting to have a clan of people who liked ship combat (not necessarily pirates). Instead of flying their city flags, they would fly the clan flag as an indication that they are happy to fight other members of their clan or whoever. The clan could attempt to have rules such as no 5-on-1 fights. I'm not sure if this is feasible or not, but hey, it's an idea.

    The mercenary clan could also offer protection services, accompanying monster hunters or whatever. I don't think trades pay enough to have an escort, unless the escort is doing the trade too.
  • JinsunJinsun TN, USAMember Posts: 2,939 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Cailin said:
    As a noncombatant sailor, who sails to relax and make gold, hates loss, and doesn't like to be bothered -

    The only thing that would make me not completely hate piracy (even though I respect the RP) would be paying protection money (or just being left alone). Not on a yearly basis, as I don't sail often enough for that, but say in a case by case basis. 
     
    1. Pirate hails "fight or pay"
    2. I transfer a credit
    3. Pirate leaves
    4. I do not hire a ship to wreak vengeance, that's part of the deal. Maybe next time I ask a competent friend to come along in their own ship if I don't want to pay.

    I think it would also be interesting to have a clan of people who liked ship combat (not necessarily pirates). Instead of flying their city flags, they would fly the clan flag as an indication that they are happy to fight other members of their clan or whoever. The clan could attempt to have rules such as no 5-on-1 fights. I'm not sure if this is feasible or not, but hey, it's an idea.

    The mercenary clan could also offer protection services, accompanying monster hunters or whatever. I don't think trades pay enough to have an escort, unless the escort is doing the trade too.
    You absolutely already can pay pirates off during attack. The only exception being people who constantly attack pirates.
    image
  • LennLenn Member Posts: 675 ✭✭✭✭ - Eminent
    I haven't sailed in years, but my understanding is that sailing (per ship) is still significantly worse gold that ordinary dragon hunting, outside the very best trade deals (and the fact that it doesn't cap).

    Is this still true?
  • CooperCooper Member Posts: 5,336 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    Lenn said:
    I haven't sailed in years, but my understanding is that sailing (per ship) is still significantly worse gold that ordinary dragon hunting, outside the very best trade deals (and the fact that it doesn't cap).

    Is this still true?
    Yes.

    SiduriLenn
  • KresslackKresslack Florida, United StatesMember Posts: 6,312 @@ - Legendary Achaean
    It's pretty easy to identify who is on a ship. It tells you each time they fire who manned the weapon, and there is a skill in Watch where you can see all persons on deck and visible. 

    The main issue is, as Jinsun and Morthif mentioned, most seafaring activity is being aligned strictly with cities to put an emphasis on city navies. 

    Unless a city is going to allow citizens to attack other vessels unprovoked (which apparently only Eleusis allows), then it becomes nearly impossible to keep an organization like this running. It would take people who are willing to operate completely independent from such other organizations to keep it going. 


  • LaedhaLaedha Member Posts: 162 ✭✭✭ - Distinguished
    Lenn said:
    I haven't sailed in years, but my understanding is that sailing (per ship) is still significantly worse gold that ordinary dragon hunting, outside the very best trade deals (and the fact that it doesn't cap).

    Is this still true?
    Seamonster hunting near Tapoa is 60k per hour, that's pretty good even compared to dragon hunting. 

    I LOVE a lot of what @Khel said but I am not sure admin is willing to make coding changes. 
    SiduriZbaco
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