To preface this: this is actually a hypathetical. Do not feel obliged to panic if a sense of impending doom overtakes you after reading. With that out of the way:
I am interested to know the community's thoughts on the call for help command. This is not anything resembling an actual proposal at this stage, more an attempt to gauge people's general feelings concerning the existing mechanics. Things I'm interested in:
- What do people think call for help adds to the experience?
- Inversely, what do you think it detracts from the experience?
- What changes (if any) would you like to see?
I'm sure this has the potential to get a little enthusiastic, so lets try to keep it civil with that in mind.
I will preface this off of experience both good and bad when it comes to call for help capabilities.
In lower populated cities (Off Hours Raiding), I believe the call for help command is helpful as a tool for those who may not be inherently inclined for combat, or less comfortable with raid defense. I think that ultimately it affords an avenue to feel confident in that regard and permit defensive strategy when there may not necessarily be a better option.
During more populated times/normal raiding periods, It affords a way to split up groups and afford once again strategies to combat the general means of being outnumbered and overwhelmed by pure damage and produce pressure upon an offensive team in a City as well. Allowing the ability to break up an entrenched group with various rites, harmonics, vibes, vines, walls, indoors, etcetera, where the only option is to either engage headon, or try and break up with LoS.
It is for all intents and purposes a tool in the toolbelt, especially if one is not a security aide or minister able to move guards manually, it also provides that safety net. Plus most raiders can and will go to locations which are beyond the typical range of a guards patrol.
Now for some negatives, it is in a way a workaround from layouts allowing the offensive teams to lack strategy and do their fortifications to prevent breakup and overall successes, which I can see can be difficult for some groups or perhaps groups with less seasoned members (I would be included in that...to some degree)
Also I feel the frequency of being able to call for help might be a bit fast, as you could move call for help, move again call for help, guards will just keep running. Following the calls, and those who call them.
There is potential to work out the guards in a way that this could remain but maybe be lessened in functionality without necessarily hindering. You could perhaps afford guards only to be called during a sanction. Another option would perhaps be giving calling for help a sort of cooldown to prevent spam calling. I know one of the things they did in another game was create a guard fatigue of sorts, where they had an upkeep, if they had continued interaction they grew stronger and harder to kill, but if they were defeated their morale would drop and they would do less damage. I forget the actual formula, but I kind of liked it, as it made guards not as deadly over time.
I am purely posting this as an opinion of course, and I am sure others will be far more insightful.
There are things I like and don't like, both as invader and defenders but honestly it's quite hard to find a way to change them in any way that doesn't break something. It's quite a house of cards, and has evolved over such a long period of time to be what it is now.
Like, I could say I don't like that one person can summon 5 guards in a second or two and annihilate 3 people without touching them. But at the same time I also understand that cities should be relatively safe spaces, and if CFH only called 1 or 2 guards, people would abuse it.
Another example is that personally I don't think guards should die. The fact that they can die makes them open to guard bashing, which makes it necessary to have big stacks of them that are capable of killing multiple dragons very rapidly, and requires that they have ridiculous over the top abilities like area summons and web etc, just to cover a worst case scenario. In the process this makes any interaction with opposing guards that isn't worse case scenario (guard bashing) a bit ridiculous. We removed crits on guards but that didn't fix the issue it just made it a little tougher (which is a trifle now with earrings and boomerang gimmicks etc).
If it were me I'd consider toning down guards a little but but make them unkillable. This would remove the threat of guard bashing from the challenge of balancing them. You could for instance have CFH call one guard per player. It wouldn't be enough to spell certain death to a single invader but it'd sure give a massive advantage to a defender. If you want 5 guards you need 5 players, or maybe 1 player doing CFH 5 times, on a 4s cooldown. Currently we can't have nice things like that because guard bashing exists.
At the same time guard bashing is how cities grief each other which /apparently/ is a thing we have to have, so you could replace this with something else, like meaningful city damage (current iteration is pretty ignorable), or more involvement of shrines, or some new mechanic.
Another thought is that guards/city design is highly imbalanced between the cities, due to clever design as well as number of rooms. Larger cities should simply get more guards. Otherwise cities like Mhaldor, Eleusis, and even Ashtan to a limited extent, are going to always have a huge advantage on this front, compared to sprawling cities like Hashan, Cyrene, Targossas that focused on aesthetics a lot more than functionality.
Also, and I really hate to do this (but not really), EARRINGS. it's impossible to balance city defence and guards around the ability for entire groups to instantly fast travel in and out of cities or anywhere else in the city the at their leisure. Before this earring meta took over, city raids were WAY more fun and interesting on both sides. I'm not at all kidding when I say earrings are the single worst element of city conflict (and really, all group conflict), as guard mechanics and totems etc don't really matter when you can blip out of existence any time you want to safety, then blip back with full health and 3 more dragons to help you out. Positioning doesn't matter, hindrance doesn't matter, indoors/outdoors doesn't matter, orb of confinement doesn't matter, etc etc - heck even entire player classes don't even matter sometimes - earrings simply cancel out all of these things and now we have to design guards that can beat that? Well, you can't.
Tldr: fix earrings/confinement and just get rid of guard bashing, and then we can make guards WEAKER which would be fine without either of those things.
CFH should absolutely be something that is kept around. Players should be able to feel some amount of safety in their own city that if someone pops in on them, or a thief appears, that they can reasonably CALL FOR HELP and get aide if guards are set up properly.
However. Some cities are built in such a way (See: Mhaldor) that optimal coverage requires a surprisingly low amount of constables compared to other guards. I understand this from an RP side-- since it is a Citadel... but it does make it a touch lackluster from a design one.
One of the more recent issues that has cropped up within the last few years is the leapfrog guards. Move one set of constables a bit farther back. Then move a different set a bit closer. Then move a DIFFERENT set a bit closer... until you have 15+ constables in range of one raid group. It's definitely a problem, one that I have no real solution for.
Leapfrog guards are bad. Guard bashing is equally bad. Guards can and should help people that CFH. Changing guard summon to a hard channel made guard movements slightly better. However, I think some sort of cooldown wherein during a minute or two from their summoning they are weaker (Setting up to their new post, what have you) might help.. but I'm not honestly sure.
One thing to keep in mind is that guard come into play in two very different scenarios:
The first that comes to mind is probably raids, but there's also the matter of off-raiding safety in a city.
Mechanically speaking, I'd go as far as to say that being able to call guards to defend you is one of the main draws of living in a city over being rogue. Guards should not be an ignorable threat for this reason. They definitely should have stopping power, perhaps specially outside of raid situation when the point is to keep individual invaders outside of a city.
I do think their power could stand to be lessened during raids, however. In what measure, I don't know. As we are all aware, comparing numbers is hardly ever a good idea or leads anywhere. Maybe make it so the more guards summoned by a CFH during a raid, the less powerful they individually are? Still strong as a reinforcement but not enough to do the whole job by themselves, or at least not as easily. Could even handwave it as them getting in the way of each other or some such.
And you won't understand the cause of your grief...
...But you'll always follow the voices beneath.
I make a point to avoid moving guards outside of certain situations (enemy shrine down in the city is a good one), so I only call for help if people are in guard range.
I think they create a few circular issues in general though. The counter to guards is to put your back to a wall, or keep silence down- these both have counters and downsides. If people bring guards, in order to win, you have to significantly outgun your opponent. However! They don't HAVE to be outgunned to move guards either. A lot of the time I feel like other cities move or leapfrog guards against groups they think they may lose against NOT groups they can't possibly beat.
The 'punishment' for using guards is a guard bash later, which is...basically just "ok they have no one on let's go".
I'm not sure what the appropriate tweak here is, because there are a lot of things that seem to lean on the other- you want a badly outnumbered group to be able to move/use them in the event a raiding group is going overboard. However if you leave them easy to move, there's nothing to counter freely using them all the time, except guard bashing later, which is the situation guards are meant to be FOR, an attack by a way bigger force...
Layout is also definitely an issue. Hashan has a great layout for guards with that long central street and then the little loops out to the sides. Mhaldor has one like that too, where it is more fort than anything. Cyrene has a ton of random areas off alone that would require a guardstack or two just to cover that area, and then those can get bashed, and we're back to that frustrating loop.
I'd steal from Aetolia some. Killing a guard makes all other guards hit harder for the next RL day or week, scaling in duration. Kill 50 guards? Enjoy 50% more damage from the survivors for the next week. That way you can still clear out a spot you want to tank some, but you can't just go bashing while everyone is offline and leave the logs a mess.
I'd also have moving guards contribute to a level 0 tank by a significant amount- if you move guards it should be to stop something bigger than a level 1 tank. Maybe 15%/guard moved so you're risking giving up a tank before you can even move in with them. After the tank hits level 1, no more free charge, so they have to earn that level 2+.
I'd probably leave it there for the time being too, since there are so many circular dependencies- tweaking any aspect of guards seems like trouble.
- What do people think call for help adds to the experience?
Call for help adds the ability to defend a city from overwhelming odds (such as off-peak raiding), provide physical safety and security while in your home city, and makes cities feel more like a cohesive force than just a place where you can stand around. Guards are critical to helping the culture of each cities, evidenced by the exceedingly diverse cast of guard types, reactions, and interactions. They are both a mechanical positive and a role-play positive experience. Cities should feel like a fortress where you can run around free and safe from any outside forces (emphasis on they should FEEL that way, not BE that way).
- Inversely, what do you think it detracts from the experience?
While guards are a great way to defend a city, they are also a great way to cheese a raid defense. Using guards to defend during a raid has become somewhat of a "cultural taboo," even though it shouldn't be. If raiders are raiding you within guard range, that's on them; their lack of reconnaissance is your best way of chasing them out.
However, once a raid has a been started, moving guards into range is a typical method of disposing of the raiders and disarming the tank. There are way to prevent people from stationing or moving these guards, but they can all be countered by a smart team of defenders. This is problematic because it does not matter what the "fairness levels" of the raiders are. Will this group of raiders suddenly double in size when we rush because of earring trains? Are there four serpents phased in our city waiting for us, as well? Are they here to fight and have an enjoyable experience, or are they here to roflstomp us, plaugh, and move on? The answer does not matter because you have an obligation to defend your city at all costs.
- What changes (if any) would you like to see?
Guards are an important part of both raiding and city culture, and need be both powerful but also tempered. I think changes to these sorts of systems should be small and incremental. That said, my only proposed change is aimed at leveling the playing field for raiders while also allowing defenders to use their guards to their fullest capacity.
The change: Prevent the stationing or moving of guards during a sanctioned raid. You can still move them if a group is trying to earn a sanction, but once that sanction starts no more guards can be hired or moved. For the raiders, this prevents being already outnumbered 2 to 1 AND having the enemy station new guards because they are just not letting that tank blow up for any reason. For the defenders, it still allows them all the functional and cultural use of guards, but requires cities to really think about guard layout since they can't just "patch it up" during a raid.
This might be a controversial opinion but I think guards are quite fine as they are. Ever since we made stationing a hard channel the opportunity for counterplay has grown substantially, and then even more so when we changed the range of cataclysm/telepathy/etc to 5 rooms.
There is always potential for more counterplay, and that is where I'd want any changes to go. But guards are important, and I think that raiding a city should be the most difficult form of group combat - it should be difficult to move around in an enemy city, it should be life threatening, and the defenders should have tools to make them feel like they have the home field advantage, even if a good team can work around those tools. That's not to say we couldn't use some medium form of conflict for when you don't want to deal with worldburn/guards/font but with a much reduced consequence/reward - Mhaldor and Eleusis have exterminations/vivifies and that seems to work quite well.
I do think there is a somewhat significant problem that indoor raiding means you lose a lot of the tools available to prevent guard stationing, cataclysm/star/meteor all go offline. And if they are "leapfrogging" guards you are at a much higher risk if you try to move adjacent or rush.
We could also consider just raising the channel time to station constables during a sanction, but I would not want to see them prevented from being moved during a sanction as I think that encourages bait raiding even more.
tldr: Adding counterplay has already proven to work to reduce guard outrage, if they are still too problematic we should focus on adding more.
I don't think moving guards once a raid's underway should really be a problem. You're allowed to attack people who start moving guards.
If you're going to lessen the effect of guards, you should probably also decrease the gigantic cost of barracks (especially multiple ones).
Honestly I agree with Taryius. If a city's gonna cough out the amount it costs to have as many guards as they do, they should be allowed to use them. There's something to be said about poor planning on the raiders' part, if they're constantly raiding in range of guards, and not doing anything to stop them being restationed.
Disappearing from Achaea for now. See you, space cowboy.
smileyface#8048 if you wanna chat.
I've always looked at it as an important safety valve. It feels like in an average raid, the raiding team has got enough people to tank a room, maybe get a tank to Level 2, and then they need to blow the tank and gtfo because font + guards can crush even the strongest group, given enough time. It also affords the defending team, who may have somewhat equal numbers but not experienced defense leaders or who may have many fewer artefacts a 'win' path that isn't 'throw yourselves into the meat grinder again and again and hope something different happens.' (Scare quotes around 'win' because you're not really gaining anything by winning a raid defense.)
In that regard, CFH (alongside fonts) kind of puts a soft time limit on a raid that doesn't really rely on player discretion or player restraint, because we all know how that tends to ultimately work out (see also: three-person raids with unnerfed Pit, area-wide doppie, etc vs the entirety of a city).
It can also feel frustrating to a raiding party that's done everything right but still gets guarded, and that's where guardraids tend to happen... again, as a safety valve, but this time for the other side. Is the PvE nearly as satisfying as the PvP? Not really, but it still allows raiders who feel aggrieved to win a sort of moral victory. If anything, I'd say that's one of the dynamics that could probably be improved -- guardraids feel pretty bad on both sides (aside from the vague feeling of moral superiority you get while thinking 'well, you shouldn't have guarded when we had equal numbers!'), because the raiders would much rather be PvPing, and the defenders are usually helpless because guardraids happen at seriously off-peak hours.
My only gripe is how mobiles can be lured anywhere. They should respect their four room range when chasing, I think.
@Vinzent guards should never chase past their 5 room radius, if that's happening you should bug it.
@Cooper They have chased past their 4 room radius since i played 4-5 years ago.
Mhaldor, with the help of Proficy (While you were also around), guard bashed Targossas this way.
During the Targ-Mhaldor war, I found both sides learned a lot of counterplay to CFH, and that was pretty fun. Leapfrogging is an annoying and time-consuming way to still put guards in place, though. Rehiring guards on the spot also made it a bit rough. Despite that, it was pretty interesting to see people try to use, overcome and counter guards both as defender and attacker. Constables pursuing beyond their 4 room radius has both cost us tanks and helped us kill more of them during the war.
Guards do add a bit of counterplay for weaker defender groups, when the alternative would be "Just don't bother".
Guards provide a bit of safety to central, important areas to the city. Personally, I don't feel this needs to cover 80-90% of the city, though. The obvious tradeoff is being vulnerable to guard bashing, but other than some posts in rants, there's really not much consequence to that with how cheap gold is.
Like I said above, there's a few cities that put constables in range of 80-90% of every feasible room, giving you just one or two spots to really try to raid with a small group, the alternative being having to kill 4-5 guards first and bringing a larger group.
When there's any stakes to be had, defenders will definitely lean on guards to secure a victory, even if they could have a good shot at winning without them.
I like the idea of moving constables charging the tanks if it's below level 1. That'd counter leapfrogging.
No real idea for the city-wide coverage. Setting a maximum percentage of constables out of total guards would solve that, but that'd also definitely feel unfair to the bigger cities like Cyrene and Ashtan, versus the small Eleusis and Mhaldor. Personally I feel it's fine if guards can cover two or three vital spots in a hard to bash cluster, maybe four to deny too prime raiding targets, but shouldn't have CFH coverage over the whole city. Just an opinion, though.
@Cooper I have bugged it many times over years, and the answer has been the same every time; working as intended. This has been the case with a few guard bugs even when I provide logs. I stopped bothering eventually.
I would like to see the following change to guards:
Have them remain the same during non-sanction situations; just like there should be no safe space to AFK in Achaea, there should be no safe space to infiltrate, and if people catch you and call the guards on you, you definitely deserve to die. So I'm fine with the way it works during non-sanction times.
What I would like is for guards to change once a sanction begins. I would like CFH in its current functionality to stop entirely, and I would like for it to be impossible to move guards once a raid has begun.
Instead, I think it would be fun for the defenders' side to be able to call guards to a room, on a universal cooldown (which is to say, if I call guards, Bob can't call guards after. They'd be on a City-wide cooldown). The guards that would show up would be an enormous pain in the ass -but- it would be on an area-wide visible windup. The amount of time between calling and arriving would depend on where the caller is, in relation to the room they're being called to, and the guards wouldn't physically walk. They'd just appear in the destination room.
I would like these guards to be more powerful than constables. They should be very painful, and brutal, but without the summon mechanic of stationaries currently. Big damage, blackout, prone, and all that stuff, though. These guards would be killable, but probably very, very hard to kill, and they'd be on a timer. Let's say 2 minutes of in-room asskicking, and then they disperse. That's more than enough to clear any entrenched room, if the defenders have played it right.
Obviously, this would make dislodging a room with a tank in it pretty easy, so I feel like once you do that, you shouldn't be able to call them again (to any room) for the duration of that sanction, if the enemy somehow survives and you don't get the disarm. Similarly, the windup message should be different (and clear), and the time for them to get there longer. Also, while those guards are on the way, the attackers get a huge bonus to tank charge for kills. There should be counterplay, as well. Either if the summoning person is killed, the guards disappear, or their duration in a room with a tank in it should be much shorter, given how powerful they are.
In the end, guards would be more interesting as support, rather than the end-all-be-all. I would like it if there was a way where timing, and an accompanying strategy were the keys to winning, rather than fire-and-forget, or summoning guards for twenty minutes. It encourages more aggressive defence (summoning from close-by is faster than summoning from your guardian's room, for example), and it would make it more of a precursor to a fight, than a way to simply avoid a fight. Obviously, small teams laying a tank would probably get in a lot of trouble, but, again, they could always disperse and try and range into the room or something, encouraging the defenders to actually chase them out while the guards cover a disarm.
I'm sure there's some stuff I haven't thought of, in terms of the implications, but it seems much more attractive to me than the current system, and it would make guards a big equaliser if you've got the right idea for how to use them in tandem with the team you've got to defend with!
Personally I quite like the state of guards at the moment. With the most recent introductions of the longer, harder channels on moving guards its definitely made it possible to defend against guard movements, and having the increased infamy gain on bashing guards there's a much more significant penalty where you're gonna get hunted for it.
One problem I do agree on is the 'leapfrogging' of guards as being one of the remaining frustrations. Its the primary way a small team can dislodge a large team without any real counter, and to lose a tank to that strategy feels pretty weak. I love the idea mentioned above where guard movements once a tank is down would contribute to charging the tank, it would give good protection against this because if you had to leapfrog multiple guard stacks to get to a entrenched force they should still get their level 1 tank, but as stated don't allow it to charge beyond that.
There's different strategies to using guards and I feel like every city has good options at the moment. You can spread yourself thinner to gain more call for help coverage at the risk of being punished by guard bashers and leaving your key area's exposed, or you can consolidate your guards so they overlap and protect each other and gain solid coverage on your key area's which also makes your guards much harder to bash, but at the expense of coverage. Some cities do get natural coverage as a result of layout, which isn't ideal but there's still always those out of the way area's you can use when you want to avoid them to seal a more safe tank, so I personally don't see that as a huge concern.
I think guards are in the best state they've ever been, and I think the above mentioned tweak would probably make them pretty well balanced.
The only thing I dislike is how much OOC fighting the choice to use/not use guards in raid situations causes.
My one critique on guards is that cities having sewer grates necessitates a stack on every grate to prevent attackers from being able to dip in and out of sewers, but sewer grates are an entirely separate issue.
Guards as they currently exist are fine, especially with the hard channel of moving them and the existence of silence/bellow to stop call for help.
I think the OOC fighting primarily dates back to when guards were quite easy to move and hidden, so it was very difficult to monitor everyone and counter it. On top of that, the relative ease of using them meant some larger groups were just doing it as the easy option vs smaller groups. The changes to allow groups to see when guards are being moved and who by (observant sigil) significantly reduced that issue along with the hard channel.
If guard movement charged the tanks in non insignificant way then it would also discourage the use of guards by larger forces to try and get small enemy groups out just because its easier, because they risk charging the tank and losing the room faster.
I'd always prefer still to fight enemies if the groups are even without the use of guards, but I understand perfectly that some groups might not be as comfortable, so I always assume guards are going to be used and prepare to defend against it. I don't think moving 1 group of guards should be enough to fully charge a tank, but if for example the tank charged on the initial attempt to move a guard, then an enemy group being able to repeatedly disrupt that movement would cause additional charging and as a result mean that the guard movement itself would need to be planned and coordinated or else it becomes a risk.
@Gallida sewer grates do not necessitate guard stacks. Because of fast travel, every room is a sewer grate now. Not being hyperbolic at all.
As frustrating as it would be to have someone screw up the syntax/channel a ton and give up a free tank, I also really like the notion of rewarding disrupting guard movement charging tank more- plus, it allows a spike (that nobody would use probably but still)- "ok, you guys got sanction, we have an event in 20m. Here's your tank, go away" by moving/cancelling a few times. So maybe instead of 15% closer to 7.5%- gives you a few tries per guard, even assuming the tank has been charging a bit on its own.
My biggest issue with guards is how they interact with the war system. Tanks are the primary source of points, and taking risks is heavily penalized, especially with the ease of moving guards around and choosing fights. It leads to a very unenjoyable slog of an experience that's more about controlling how your faction plays the game than having an enjoyable experience and creating memories with the community.
I also have a problem with city layouts offering extreme advantages with guard mechanics. Mhaldor, for example, can cover a significantly larger part of their city than most other cities due to how the layout is. This is an extremely unfair advantage with regards to wars, which the guard issue makes a lot worse. In wars, it's important to take into consideration the number of rooms that are indoors/outdoors, and Mhaldor has a significant number of indoors rooms laid out in a way that guards can cover a large portion of them. Cities like Ashtan and Targossas, on the other hand, have a sprawling city design with a high number of fringe outdoor rooms with single exits.
The strength and ease of use for guards makes city layouts significantly more important and given city layout is entirely beyond player control, that feels like an unreasonable advantage. Changing how guards work would help address this for sure.
i'm a rebel
This whole leapfrogging thing is not as big a deal as it is being made out to be. In a majority of cases your approach should be nearly identical to when there are no nearby mobiles. It just seems to me most are too terrified to rush (while doing so properly). There is a very specific class-agnostic counter and it does not get used.
Rushing an enemy group while in range of mobile guards sounds like suicide unless the disparity is big enough that your group can take out 5-10 constables + defenders while diving a totem. Even if you use bellow or silence, sneaking behind the enemy group and calling for help is easy enough to do.
I also don't think the act of channeling should charge the tank, only effectively stationing. Defenders should never be 'punished' for trying, and all I would want to discourage is leapfrogging. Moving 5 guards 3-4 times should charge a tank, or at least go a long way towards it. Moving 5 guards should charge it only a little bit. Failing to move them shouldn't do anything to charge the tank, other than defending soldiers who die in the attempt.
Sounds like you don't know how to do it properly then, @Akri.
That's not meant to sound antagonistic. I'm pretty sure most of the people who have quit Targ over the years have heard me say it a million times whenever we'd had to go vs. station.
I would like to change not really how guards act, but how they are handled, such as:
-Increase the cost of guards from 25k each to 100k each, however they are a 1 time purchase.
-Overall make guards weaker.
-Guards get experience: as they kill people or just time they gain stronger abilities. (much like miners or foragers I'd guess)
-When guards are slain they essentially "embrace death" and return to their posts a couple hours later. When guards die they lose a significant portion of their experience.
-Have 3 to 5 "special" abilities the security minister could invest into guards which have met the max level. These could be things like a chance to block an enemy from using a legend card, having constables prone/paralyse targets (which would prevent earring dragging them).
-Have guard deaths count towards sanctions and charging a tank.
-"stationary guards" would respond to calls for help only in a 1 room radius.
These things would encourage the use of guards, give raiders a tangible reward for killing guards, and it would also remove the high cost of getting your guards killed. Overall I think these things would encourage conflict instead of discourage it.
-What do people think call for help adds to the experience?
I like having an option when horribly outmatched by raiders, because I don't like the idea that hiding and avoiding sanction (which feels very OOC) is the only option, nor is it fun to engage and get slaughtered 5v15 or whatever. So having guards as an option in extreme situations is fun.
- Inversely, what do you think it detracts from the experience?
A lot of cities resort to guards every single engagement, which makes raids completely non-viable or non-desirable if your raid team is on the weaker side compared to the defense team of the city you want to raid. If you want to raid, you have to have enough people to beat the opposing defense team, font weaken, and guards.
- What changes (if any) would you like to see?
I don't like leapfrog guarding. Guard stationing adding tank charge might be a way to address that. I had previously suggested that when a tank is down, you have to station within four rooms of the tank and can't station elsewhere.
I also like the idea of only one person being able to station at a time. Having larger groups and more security aides creates a potential problem when it comes to guard counters because you have to hit so many people at once, and do enough damage to kill them. Some cities already use only one stationer at a time because of number of security aides/experienced aides. I think I'd prefer that be required, though, rather than brute forcing it with ten people stationing at once.
I don't think guard hire should be usable during sanction. You should have to station guards that are already hired.
In my experience guards are largely overpowered compared to actual players. This comes from me playing offensively as a thief and defensively using guards to protect a city.
Getting 2 shotted by guards doesn't feel good. Too one sided. Conversely you need a way of protecting your city when you haven't got any combatants.
Guards being a touch weaker/escapable ((not stunning)) would be better I think, so it isn't a death sentence to have them in the same room, but have them strong enough to still cause some serious pain.
Cyrene's Runic Knights getting looked at would be a step in the right direction.
As of right now? Cyrene's runic knights are the only constables I have seen that ALL attack on the same tick consistently.
Yeah I flicked through a few logs and it looks like that's true, they all hit on the same prompt any time I saw them hit.