I made an extremely similar thread exactly one year ago, which you can find here.
For that reason, I won't rehash all my arguments, but simply lay out the problems as I see them and suggested solutions.
- Player housing is unsafe.
- Soul theft
- Player attacks
- Requires constant upkeep for basic security
- Player housing is inconvenient.
- Requires walking through the subdivision
- Feels disconnected from the city
- Much easier to stand in a random city room with guards
- Player housing cannot be shared.
- Building RP-heavy homes like clan houses or family homes is discouraged due to the inability to grant permissions for doors or furniture
- Expensive upgrades are much less desirable
- Player housing is inferior to ships.
- Ships are impenetrable if just kept in harbour.
- Invulnerable to theft, prism and attacks, and has enhanced privacy and continent-wide shipreturn.
- Ships already have the added functionality of transport, trade, PVP and PVE.
- Ships are currently more desirable than houses for security and storage, not even necessarily for the seafaring aspect.
WHY IS THIS A PROBLEM?
Housing has enormous RP potential and could be a huge gold sink with the right motivation. It just seems to make no RP sense that characters should aim to buy a ship instead of a house if their primary reason is security and storage. Housing as it is currently feels underdeveloped and is prohibitively expensive for being purely cosmetic; there is no incentive for players to invest in developing it into an RP tool when ships provide both utility and peace of mind.
Instead of looking at housing as a cosmetic option, we should treat them like coveted end-game content to spend gold on that combines utility and prestige. Make them desirable enough, certainly more than ships, to constantly upgrade and use. Upgrades can be expensive but players should at least be offered the option.
Note that the suggestions below are not meant to be all implemented together; rather it's a question of choosing which would be most suitable.
- Introduce a new housing upgrade akin to a permanent monolith sigil. Players can still resigil as normal without it.
- Restrict souls from walking through or reincarnating in subdivision houses. There is usually no interaction involved whatsoever in house theft. It just preys upon the people who use houses as they are meant to be used and can't log in to upkeep sigils.
- Make each house a new area on its own, the way ships are.*
- Provide lockable chests only available in houses. The capacity could be restricted and you could have only one chest per room.
- Make ships in harbour the same area as the harbour (so prismable, area attacks will work there etc). I'm sorry, ship owners, but ships being their own area are just too OP and this is a big reason why housing will never be able to surpass ships. Making them the same area as harbours would bring them on par with houses, but they'd still be reasonably safe.
- Ship owners can still purchase non-prism, monolith (if added) upgrades.
*: If houses are made separate areas, contracts should not tick down there.
If people are going to hide on ships regardless, they may as well do it in a house where it makes more sense and they can RP with people. I am aware this opinion will not be popular, but short of downgrading ships, I see no way around it.
- Allow the use of HOMERETURN to return to a room in your house. The same requirements apply as to SHIPRETURN.
- Possibly add the HOMERETURN function to a room in the city. If the house is made an area on its own, then players should return to that city room when they leave.
Justification: To bring it up to par with SHIPRETURN.
- Allow organisation, family and other legitimate RP clans to build clan-owned housing. This helps to further legitimise their status, especially families, and gives housing RP importance.
- Allow a maximum of one room per member of the clan (except the clan leader) or one room per ally of the house owner where the leader/owner can grant the room dweller individual door/furniture placement/room edit perms. The owner/clan leader still has the power to create/edit/delete rooms as usual.
- Allow clan members/personal allies to use housing upgrades such as stables.
- Allow clan members/personal allies to HOMERETURN to their personal room.
- Coming back to life in your own room after death would be an interesting way to encourage housing use.
- Give more choices and functionalities for servants.
- Add more unique housing upgrades - an ice box that produces customisable food similar to the stone flowerpot, for example. Or house pets.
- I don't know if this can be done, but it would be nice to connect the rooms built on adjacent plots to your 'main' building in some way. There seems no point to owning plots on, say, an entire island when you only need one to build on.
- Please let me customise the door leading in. I have a portcullis >(
Note: I am not advocating (largely) for the downgrade of ship features as ships can and do double as housing. But I firmly believe that player housing can be given a more important role in Achaean life, and so mainland housing should be just as appealing and functional, if not more so, than ships. Ships already have many advantages and don't need to outweigh the benefits of mainland housing. I realise ship owners may not agree with me, but we'll have to agree to disagree there.
I would also like to hear how many of you would use houses if these changes were implemented, or whether housing would become more attractive to you. If not, I'd like to hear about what would make it attractive to you.
I'm sure I've missed a few things, so feel free to comment.