1 June

DJ #20: A Tale of Twelve Tribes

By Caspian

Welcome to Dev Journal #20 on the designing of tribes! I know it's been a while since we had a design journal but as the vast majority of what people want to know about the tribes are their specific differences, this one should be relatively short.

Even still, I think many people underestimate how impactful the tribes will be on their overall play experience; so I wanted to use this DJ as an opportunity to prepare people a bit by doing a deep dive on the design process of the tribes. With any luck, you should walk away from this Dev Journal with a deeper understanding of why tribes exist in Elyria, how they were developed, and how they'll affect your play experience in Chronicles of Elyria.

What are Tribes?

Tribes in the context of a game, especially an RPG, may be an unfamiliar term to many. So I wanted to take a moment to describe exactly what we mean by a tribe.

First, a tribe in Chronicles of Elyria, as in our world, represents a collection of people who generally share a common set of physical characteristics, values, and beliefs. In fact, identifying those broad categories was a large part of designing the tribes. The complete set of categories are:

  • Biology
  • Environment
  • History
  • Culture
  • Sociology
  • World Relations

This means that each tribe has a unique set of physical characteristics and adaptations that separate them from other tribes. And it should come as no surprise that those adaptations are a direct result of the environment the tribe was established and evolved in.

At the same time, each tribe also has its own unique history that, while potentially influenced by other tribes, is personal to them. This history brings with it a unique culture, including a language and a set of religious beliefs that are specifically catered to the personality and the needs of the tribe.

Next, because of the environment and culture, each tribe has its own set of social conventions such as professions, levels of government, and processes by which members of the community advance within the society.

Finally, as a result of the tribes’ shared histories, each one has a relationship with one or more of the other tribes - whether that be as enemies or allies.

What does this all mean? It means you should expect the above information to be mostly spelled out for each tribe when you receive their write-ups. Be looking for that over the course of the next week!

Second, tribes in Chronicles of Elyria take the place of what would normally be considered a "race" in other games. But make no mistake, tribes in Chronicles of Elyria are far more than races in other games. Let's take a deeper look at why.

How are tribes different from races?

In most games, races are largely cosmetic in nature and contribute very little to the overall player experience. Because player characters are rarely impacted by their environment, the design of races is instead driven by narrative or other artificial constructs. Generally speaking, races in other games provide one or more of the following:

  • Starting bonuses to your character's attributes
  • Passive bonuses to one or more skills
  • An activatable ability
  • Your starting zone
  • Your knowns language(s)
  • Your enemies and allies

Beyond those things, however, the race you choose has very little impact on your day-to-day player experience. This is true at virtually all levels of play. In many MMOs, it's possible in the early game to pick up and move to a different starting area, allowing you to experience the quest chains of the other races. At later levels, the passive bonuses and activatable abilities are generally so underpowered as to become virtually useless.

The only real, lasting difference your race generally has is on your enemies and allies. Let me repeat that. The one thing that remains meaningful throughout your play experience (with respect to races) is which other races are friendly and which are "kill on sight". Ironically, this is perhaps the one thing that we'd expect to change over time.

In Chronicles of Elyria, these are virtually the opposite. First, while your tribe (or more generally your bloodline) will affect your predisposition toward certain attributes, your tribe doesn't directly control the starting values. That's established by your parents - regardless of which tribe they are. So, while being a Yoru may cause you to get stronger easier, it doesn't make you automatically stronger.

Similarly, tribes in CoE don't provide any kind of passive bonuses to skills. Instead, they tend to contribute more toward your overall survivability in certain regions. Any skills you learn at an early age are based on the biome your family is from, regardless of which tribe they are a part of.

Next, CoE has no activatable abilities associated with tribes and no starting zones. During character creation, you pick a family and wherever that family resides is your starting area. This is completely orthogonal to what tribe the family is from.

Finally, while your tribe does identify what languages you know and the relationship your tribe has with other tribes, those are completely dynamic and prone to changing over time.

At this point, I've identified what races typically provided, and I've identified how tribes are not races, but I haven't specifically addressed what tribes affect. Let's get into that now.

What mechanics do tribes affect?

As I mentioned before, tribes are far more impactful than players may realize, and either directly or indirectly influence many different feature areas of the game. Let's talk briefly about those now.

Directly

  • Character Creation - Your family will dictate your tribe, or you can filter by tribe to limit which families are available to you.
  • Body Dynamics & Attributes - Your tribe will impact your body dynamics and how easy or hard it is to train different attributes.
  • Combat - As each tribe has a different size and reach, and different attributes, some are more effective in combat than others, and with different weapon types.
  • Communication - Each tribe has their own set of shared or personal languages, which will have some impact on which other tribes you can interact with by default.
  • Survival mechanics - Each tribe has a different metabolism, and different adaptations which impact their ability to survive in different biomes.
  • Equipment Constraints - As each tribe is a different size, not all armor, weapons, and tools are usable by members of all tribes.
  • Reputation & Fame - While dynamic, a tribe's reputation impacts their ability to survive socially in different regions.
  • Contracts - Contracts can be tailored toward or against members of specific tribes.
  • Locomotion & Parkour - As the tribes are all different sizes, they move at different rates, can pass through different openings, and are capable of varying levels of agile maneuvers.
  • Government - Each tribe has their own system of government and advancements. Some are based solely on systems of descent, while others are based on systems of meritocracy.

Indirectly:

While there are several things which your tribe impacts directly, the following are things mostly impacted by your biome. However, as most tribes are more suited to certain biomes than others, they're predisposed in certain ways based on the their tribe.

  • Biomes - As the tribes are pre-disposed to certain biomes, your choice of biome is a function of your willingness to handle the challenges that come from living outside a comfortable biome.
  • Skills - While tribes don't impact your skills directly, the tribe you're a part of will likely determine which biome you reside in, which will impact which skills and professions are useful to you
  • Architecture & housing - The resources in a biome play the largest part in determining the architecture and structure types of a tribe
  • Ecology - The biome dictates what food is available, which indirectly determines how players go about gathering food
  • Technology - Necessity is the mother of invention, and nothing drives necessity more than a tribe's biome
  • Sieging - The environment, such as the density of trees and the softness of the ground dictates what type of siege equipment is usable, and thus what kinds of defenses are required
  • Settlements - Each biome provides its own challenges and access to food and water. This necessarily impacts how large a settlement can be.
  • Transportation - As with sieging, the biome has a dramatic impact on transportation modes used by the different tribes

Note: One important thing which is not effected by Tribe is lifespan lengths. In the early designs of the game we'd had a random lifespan between 10 and 14 months to account for differences in genetics. But we've since done away with that, and given everyone a standard 52 week lifespan, regardless of bloodline or tribe.

Biome Driven Design

Now that you've gotten a brief look at the things affected by your chosen tribe, no doubt it's obvious that a large part of the tribes' design hinges on their default biome. We have a saying here at Soulbound: "The truth is in the biome."

While player characters in most MMOs are largely unaffected by their environment, and races are designed via narrative or lore, in CoE virtually all the design of a tribe is based on their need to survive in their biome. That's because their biome dictates things like:

  • The natural resources available for food, shelter, clothing, and equipment
  • The space available for housing
  • The number and form of predators
  • The ease of access to water
  • The presence of poisons or other toxins
  • The exposure to the sun and elements
  • The soil type and ability to grow and cultivate food.

The result is that tribes in CoE should feel more like they’re a part of their world, and that the world has far greater impact on your characters.

What constraints were placed on the design process?

While the mechanical design of each tribe is based on its need to survive in its biome, the aesthetic design has no such constraints. In fact, we were completely free to make the tribes look as wild and crazy as we wanted to. Despite the creative freedom, we wanted to ensure we remained on the lower end of the spectrum between low fantasy and high fantasy. While there's no hard and fast rules about what characters look like in a low fantasy vs. high fantasy setting, we did put in certain constraints which we felt were necessary to maintain the look and feel we were going after. The constraints were:

  • Skin and hair materials had to be the same for all
  • The silhouette and skeletal structure had to be the same for all
  • Animations should work for all the tribes

The above constraints meant that none of the tribes would have fur, scales, or hide as skin, and they would all have skin that was effectively the same type of flesh as humans on Earth. Additionally, limiting the silhouette and skeleton meant there wouldn't be tribes with extra limbs, fewer limbs, wings, tails, or anything else that would change the basic outline of the shadow.

The last constraint above meant that while not every tribe would have every animation, those animations they did have could work the same across all tribes. Now, we're still free to go back and add tribe-specific animations, but the constraint frees us up from that requirement.

In addition to the above constraints we had one other very important one - the tribes needed to be visually distinct from just their portrait or bust. In other words, you need to be able to identify someone as one tribe or another from just looking at their face, head, shoulders, and chest.

This means that to differentiate between the different tribes we effectively had the following things to work with:

  • Head shape & size
  • Hair color
  • Eye color
  • Skin color and patterning
  • Ear, nose, and lip shapes and size
  • Other facial structure differences such as forehead and cheekbones

When designing the individual traits for the tribes such as skin color and eye color we tried to, as much as possible, pull from our own world. For example, for skin color we pulled from the Fitzpatrick scale for human skin color, as well as Von Luschan's scale. For eye color we also pulled from human eye colors including Brown, Blue, Green, Gray, Hazel, Amber, Violet, Black, and Red.

While I've thus far spent a good amount of time talking about constraints and how we drew inspiration from humans, don't assume that the tribes are just like humans on Earth. Indeed, many of them are quite distinct. On Earth, humans effectively stopped evolving when their brains reached a point where they could create tools and technologies to overcome the challenges posed by their environment. In Chronicles of Elyria, we asked the fundamental question, "How would humans be different if they developed technology later in history, and were instead forced to adapt to their environments." The results are something on the scale of low-to-high fantasy more toward low, but different enough that they no longer feel human.

That all being said, one of the things that makes Chronicles of Elyria unique is the ability to breed with others to fulfill your genetic imperative and see your genes pass on from one generation to another. That creates a sort of final constraint we'll talk about next - the need for all customization related to tribes being able to blend smoothly between parents and children.

Tribal Breeding & Bloodlines

Procreating in Chronicles of Elyria allows players to create children which are hybrids of their adults. But this process isn't as simple as arbitrarily picking values between the parents. Indeed, while we feel breeding and genetics are important, we also need to maintain the integrity of the game world. This has required us to put constraints on the breeding system which help fulfill the following objectives:

  • Ensure diversity in the world
  • Make sure the character models don't break

When I'm talking about constraints I'm not talking about constraining which tribes can breed with which tribes. On the contrary, we think it's interesting what combinations of mating pairs might arise from the genetics system. What we mean by constraints are mechanics put in place to ensure breeding between all the different tribes remains achievable and believable.

While this shouldn't be new information for most people, for this design journal let me briefly re-describe how the character creation process works with respect to families.

When a character is being created they must first select which family they're part of. Once they've done that, a random sampling of the genetic markers will be taken from both parents (Remember from your biology class that everyone has two sets of genes). With a random sampling taken from both "mom" and "dad", the player will be presented with a collection of sliders that have "mom" on one side and "dad" on the other. These sliders represent the set of possible values which can result from selecting either mom's genes, dad's genes, or a combination of the two.

Now, to ensure diversity in the world, not all values between mom and dad are available. Instead, there will be a small margin around each parent that allows players to pick genes which are "more like mom", or "more like dad", but not "directly in-between." This should serve to strengthen the family resemblance and slow down the convergence of all genetic combinations toward the mean.

At the same time, to ensure we don't break the character models, some genetic sliders are bound to one another. That is, choices along one marker will often force a selection of another marker. This is to make sure we don't get grossly disproportionate characters, and to make sure there is internal consistency within the world.

As a good example, skin, eye, and hair color are controlled by the amount of melanin in a character. This means these three attributes are linked. Selecting one - such as the eye color you want, will filter the available skin and hair colors to something that makes sense. While this will reduce the number of possible combinations, it'll also ensure that, for the most part, the appearance of each character is consistent with what we'd expect to see on earth.

Why Tribes - What do they bring to the game?

Now that we've looked at what a tribe is and what kinds of things you can expect them to impact in your day-to-day gameplay, I wanted to also briefly touch on why we have tribes. Despite what may appear to be one of the most complex games ever made, I'm a firm believer that systems shouldn't be added to a game unless they address multiple issues and can be used to solve multiple problems simultaneously. It should come as no surprise then that tribes address three separate issues.

Balance - First, as you'll learn more about in the next section, the tribes address the problem of balance. Because we have survival mechanics, and we want each biome to feel dramatically different, the concept of tribes is necessary in order to allow players to survive effectively within each of the biomes.

Diversity - Video games, even MMORPGs, are effectively consumable resources. That is, at some point you as a player will have consumed everything there is to consume and will, unless there's something other than raw content to keep you interested, will get bored of a game and move on. The introduction of different biomes and the accompanying tribes adds a unique element of diversity to the world, making each region and interactions which each tribe feel like all new content.

Conflict - Similar to the previous point, games without conflict become boring. As a result, CoE has been designed from the ground up to provide multiple layers of conflict - conflict between players and the story, conflict between players and their environment, conflict between different religions, and now conflict between members of different tribes.

Asymmetric design

While slightly off-topic, another thing I wanted to talk about is our general design philosophy with respect to tribes and many other areas of CoE. I'm doing this because I think many peoples' first gut reactions will be to look at each tribe and immediately identify what they perceive as (potentially unfair) advantages and disadvantages given to some tribes and not others. This is a natural response, but it's important to understand what those perceptions mean, and why they're nothing to really be concerned about.

One of the things that makes Chronicles of Elyria truly unique is our focus on asymmetric rather than symmetric design. Where many games focus on balance through equality, CoE focuses on balance through contrast. Let me give you an example.

In the game of Chess, both players start off with 16 pieces on the board - 8 pawns, 4 minor pieces, and 4 major pieces. The pieces, aside from the king and queen are completely symmetrical on the board and in the case of the king and queen, the switched positions are there to maintain actual rather than perceived symmetry.

This is an example of balance and design through symmetry. To ensure the game is fair, both sides are, as much as possible, made to be the same.

In contrast, if we were to look at a fighting game such as Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat, Soul Calibur, etc., you'd see a completely different situation. At the start of the game both players pick their fighters, and then enter the arena to compete. The fighters have the same health, the same general number of moves and combos, and the same timer in which to defeat the other person. However, each fighter has their own unique moves and combos, their own unique fighting styles and their own advantages and disadvantages when measured up against the other fighters.

Both Chess and the fighting games are fair, but the fairness is achieved in different ways. Where Chess is made fair through equality, the fighting games are made fair through asymmetric balance. That is, the relative strengths and weaknesses of each fighter are tightly tuned so that while they are different, they are relatively equal. I say relatively equal because it's virtually impossible with asymmetric design to ensure 100% equality, but that's not really the goal.

The goal with asymmetric design is to create interesting and unique challenges that can only be encountered when the problem space isn’t symmetrical. In other words, when the game is fair but not equitable.

Most fighting games, or really any game that use asymmetric design (MOBAs, RTSs, Fighting Games, etc.) typically include conversations around which team, champion, or hero is more powerful than others. In some cases, the perceived differences are real, but in many cases the differences are situational, and rely a lot more on player skill than people are willing to admit.

So, let me re-iterate. We recognize that each tribe has perceived strengths and weaknesses. That's by design. But don't freak out. Instead, look at the tribe holistically, think about what the play experience will be, and then decide on which tribe is best for you. If you attempt to min/max your tribe selection, you may well drive yourself crazy.

That said, why do we use asymmetric design at all if it creates such conflicted arguments? Well, for many of the same reasons we have tribes.

  • The use of asymmetric design creates a perceived inequality in the world that necessarily results in player conflict.
  • It also increases the diversity in the world, as people perceive each side of an asymmetric design as a different play experience, even if the result is functionally the same.
  • While both symmetric and asymmetric designs can be skill-based, asymmetric design allows for a broader range of player skill, extending beyond just understanding the rules of the game, to how the different design elements interact with the rules of the game. This ultimately leads to a deeper, richer learning curve and a prolonged period of enjoyment.

Historical vs. Launch

The last thing I wanted to underscore is that the only thing constant in Elyria is that things will continue to change. This is true both for the asymmetric design and balance of the game, as well as the mechanics themselves. Over the course of development, we will continue to tune and tweak the tribes until we feel they are balanced and fair.

In addition, as I mentioned before, the tribes affect so many things in Elyria, many of which are ultimately player controlled. Things such as the culture, social structures, and even the enemies and allies of each tribe. So, while we've worked hard to help establish their pre-existing relations, their history, and their predispositions, these are ultimately subject to change post-launch, as the tribes go from being our creations - to yours.

Conclusion

That's it for this design journal. If you've managed to make it all the way to what ended up being decidedly not a shorter design journal, you should be primed and excited to read about the individual tribes which will be following in additional articles. They'll start out as forum posts, but will then be moved to the Game Guide section of the website later.

Stay tuned, individual tribe writeups are imminent.

Pledged to the continued advancement of the Soulborn Engine and the chronicling of Elyria,

Caspian

Discuss

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Friedrich - 3 days ago

You guys from the CoE team are so ambitious, you make me believe this world still has ideals. The tribe system seems awesome. Especially the Hrothi tribe seems good to me due to it's resemblance to dwarves. In times of casual gaming and tons of second-class games, I wish you guys all the best to make a great game here!

Lofi - 1 month ago

[comment deleted]

jacen123 - 2 months ago

Hey Guys, I am excited about this game, just hope that it won´t be to much of a pay to win situation like in other games we already know.

Cheers and just hoping for the best!

Casitro - 2 months ago

Thank you, Caspian, for this huge piece of information! :) I heared about CoE just a few days ago but am already excited to read about the single tribes and further content. And I like the idea of producing a non-symmetric balanced game because its just kind of realistic.

Hieronymus - 2 months ago

Regarding the comment on changes, will CoE function like so many other MMOs where game mechanics are constantly modified post-launch? The reason I ask is because this kind of perpetual flux forces players to have to relearn/adjust to mechanics every time a change is rolled out. It's a rather tedious and frustrating experience.

drillerb - 2 months ago

I FEEL I UNDERSTAND THIS MUCH BETTER NOW THANKS

Shadowfox - 2 months ago

Exactly what im looking for when it comes to the various tribes, awesome!

Woogawoman - 2 months ago

It's after 9 am on the left coast. Anyone else repeatedly refreshing to see when the next tribes posts drop? :D

Phatz - 2 months ago
@Woogawoman:

Yea I Am, still only Neran.

Arlexius - 2 months ago

lol I like how Caspian had to dedicate 3 paragraphs to "dont freak out".

Chidar - 2 months ago

Please clarify this statement:in a blog

Combat - As each tribe has a different size and reach, and different attributes, some are more effective in combat than others, and with different weapon types.

Rojinn - 2 months ago
@Chidar:

Posted By Chidar at 08:54 AM - Sun Jun 04 2017

Please clarify this statement:in a blog

Combat - As each tribe has a different size and reach, and different attributes, some are more effective in combat than others, and with different weapon types. I'm just guessing, but I would say that a large muscular character may be better with a war hammer or heavy club, and a smaller more agile player may be better with a pair of slender swords or a bow and arrows. Course, that's just a guess.

Rojinn - 2 months ago

I love it!!!! It seems to me that many on the forums hope that COE turns out to be an updated version of WOW, with its gank-fest environment. These seem to be the people complaining about "fair". I am praying that it is not! Make no mistake, I like PVP, but I hate the kill-on-sight pvp of some games. Perhaps tribes will help define reasons to fight. Perhaps COE will be more than just a world of mindless serial killers. What is described so far is a deep, immersive, second life for us. I am enjoying watching the game develop, and I'm trying to be patient for release. Please stay on track and deliver a polished, complete version of your vision. Fantastic!!!

Grapefruitkush - 2 months ago

Woot woot ! Can't wit for land selection to get this ball rolling ... shit I gotta pay off my tier this week XD !

Dante_Rhyne - 2 months ago

loving it thxs SBS

DPierre - 2 months ago

My body is so ready

PagliacciGrim - 2 months ago

i am enjoying the idea of an academic giant

Ethansito - 2 months ago

I can't wait for the emergence of racism. :P

Casador - 2 months ago
@Ethansito:

Me too!

Soliloquy - 2 months ago
@Ethansito:

+1 internet to you

KainanHighbow - 2 months ago

It definitely poses some interesting rp situations, I love it

Rojinn - 2 months ago
@KainanHighbow:

I know, right!?

PirateGentleman - 2 months ago

Awesome read. Really what I was expecting. Now I'm all hyped for the tribes

Azmodeth - 2 months ago

so wait, if we start as mayor and have a city and are one specific tribe, and choose to be in a biome with our enemies we will be screwed ?

I don't get this whole enemies thing...

I feel some of what is gonna happen is the mechanics are gonna hold on so tight the fun will just slip right past it all.

Malais - 2 months ago
@Azmodeth:

Posted By Azmodeth at 1:39 PM - Thu Jun 01 2017

so wait, if we start as mayor and have a city and are one specific tribe, and choose to be in a biome with our enemies we will be screwed ?

I don't get this whole enemies thing...

I feel some of what is gonna happen is the mechanics are gonna hold on so tight the fun will just slip right past it all.

If you start as a mayor you pick an preexisting settlement. You won't find members of a tundra biome living in the desert so no you won't start out in a biome with your enemies.

Calliso - 2 months ago

Enjoyed the read and look forward to more specific information for each individual tribe!

Orisoll - 2 months ago

In before everyone picks Kypiq and Elyria burns in the lolipocalypse.

Pleepleus - 2 months ago

Sounds great Caspian, really in depth and helpful. You guys are doing an amazing job and I can't wait to read up on the individual tribes.

mystichaze - 2 months ago

Awesome Read Caspian! Now I am twice as excited to read what you have on the different tribes. To me, this feels like we have finally reached an important milestone in the game. Bringing us one step closer to being able to develop our communities.

Big thumbs up

Inasyah - 2 months ago

This is an example of good game design which most mmos lack. Well done.

Moonlynx - 2 months ago

A lot information on how the Tribes are designed. It is a design journal after all. Looking forward to seeing the specifics.

And as someone else said, time for the popcorn.

Belzak - 2 months ago

Loving it.

Eurickdm - 2 months ago

"The above constraints meant that none of the tribes would have fur, scales, or hide as skin, and they would all have skin that was effectively the same type of flesh as humans on Earth. Additionally, limiting the silhouette and skeleton meant there wouldn't be tribes with extra limbs, fewer limbs, wings, tails, or anything else that would change the basic outline of the shadow."

Tahnk you, thank you!! This paragraph relieved me from some of my worries.

Caelestius - 2 months ago
@Eurickdm:

Posted By Eurickdm at 6/1/2017 1:25:02 PM

"The above constraints meant that none of the tribes would have fur, scales, or hide as skin, and they would all have skin that was effectively the same type of flesh as humans on Earth. Additionally, limiting the silhouette and skeleton meant there wouldn't be tribes with extra limbs, fewer limbs, wings, tails, or anything else that would change the basic outline of the shadow."

Tahnk you, thank you!! This paragraph relieved me from some of my worries.

Same!! I was worried that the Dras were going to look like Swamp Thing or that the Yoru were going to have big old horns or something.

Eurickdm - 2 months ago
@Caelestius:

Posted By Caelestius at 10:32 AM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Same!! I was worried that the Dras were going to look like Swamp Thing or that the Yoru were going to have big old horns or something.

Door still open for protuding teeths; pointy ears; 3 eyes (or just 1); spiked bones and a lot of things... but i can live with that... i think.

HammerStrike - 2 months ago

Good information here! We really appreciate this a lot!!

LeBron - 2 months ago

I really like that not all tribes are equal so I'm even more happy to read what was your thinking behind the decision.

Mesis - 2 months ago

Does this mean we will get more than 1 tribe per day so we can see all the tribes before QnA?

Sage_Li_Wei - 2 months ago
@Mesis:

Posted By Mesis at 08:07 AM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Does this mean we will get more than 1 tribe per day so we can see all the tribes before QnA?

The plan was to release 3 a day. Not sure if that's still the plan. :)

_Kenna_ - 2 months ago

SO excited!! Thank you Caspian!!

Dongiovanna - 2 months ago

I read to half way than i need a coffee lol and i finaly finished.... all this is feeding my addiction to this game even more.... I hope i could just play it now but i know we have to wait longer to get well balanced a finish product.. Well done Caspian The Legion X Invicta stand with you.

Sharielane - 2 months ago

As a good example, skin, eye, and hair color are controlled by the amount of melanin in a character. This means these three attributes are linked. Selecting one - such as the eye color you want, will filter the available skin and hair colors to something that makes sense.

This is actually a bad example, because genes that control how much melanin is in your skin are not connected to the ones that govern how much melanin is in your hair and/or your eyes. If it were then all the mixed race people I know with dark skin and blue eyes are a lie, so too with all the "white" people who have dark/black hair and/or dark eyes, or for that case the handful of naturally blond people I know/have met with brown eyes.

I'm sincerely hoping that SBS is not constraining the mixture of genetics to prevent the matching of dark genes with light, especially if the character is "mixed", because of some stereotypical bullshit that people with dark X can't also have light Y.

Count_Emiya - 2 months ago
@Sharielane:

Posted By Sharielane at 04:12 AM - Thu Jun 01 2017

As a good example, skin, eye, and hair color are controlled by the amount of melanin in a character. This means these three attributes are linked. Selecting one - such as the eye color you want, will filter the available skin and hair colors to something that makes sense.

This is actually a bad example, because genes that control how much melanin is in your skin are not connected to the ones that govern how much melanin is in your hair and/or your eyes. If it were then all the mixed race people I know with dark skin and blue eyes are a lie, so too with all the "white" people who have dark/black hair and/or dark eyes, or for that case the handful of naturally blond people I know/have met with brown eyes.

I'm sincerely hoping that SBS is not constraining the mixture of genetics to prevent the matching of dark genes with light, especially if the character is "mixed", because of some stereotypical bullshit that people with dark X can't also have light Y.

There are numerous alleles responsible for color in humans, if all are dominant you see all dark colors, if all are recessive you see lighter colors in hair, eyes, and skin.

Your phrasing aside, genetics are very complex, but it would still take multiple generations, 2 at least of mixing with someone with blue eyes for instance, for someone with all dominant alleles to show a recessive trait such as blue eyes. Then of course there are mutations, but that's another can of worms.

Sharielane - 2 months ago
@Count_Emiya:

Posted By Count_Emiya at 9:16 PM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Posted By Sharielane at 04:12 AM - Thu Jun 01 2017

As a good example, skin, eye, and hair color are controlled by the amount of melanin in a character. This means these three attributes are linked. Selecting one - such as the eye color you want, will filter the available skin and hair colors to something that makes sense.

This is actually a bad example, because genes that control how much melanin is in your skin are not connected to the ones that govern how much melanin is in your hair and/or your eyes. If it were then all the mixed race people I know with dark skin and blue eyes are a lie, so too with all the "white" people who have dark/black hair and/or dark eyes, or for that case the handful of naturally blond people I know/have met with brown eyes.

I'm sincerely hoping that SBS is not constraining the mixture of genetics to prevent the matching of dark genes with light, especially if the character is "mixed", because of some stereotypical bullshit that people with dark X can't also have light Y.

There are numerous alleles responsible for color in humans, if all are dominant you see all dark colors, if all are recessive you see lighter colors in hair, eyes, and skin.

Your phrasing aside, genetics are very complex, but it would still take multiple generations, 2 at least of mixing with someone with blue eyes for instance, for someone with all dominant alleles to show a recessive trait such as blue eyes. Then of course there are mutations, but that's another can of worms.

"An allele is a variant form of a gene."

Thank you for your pointless correction of my phrasing. I hope that made you feel better. But how exactly did that deny any of what I said? Complex blah blah blah, multiple generations blah blah blah. In the end it had no bearing on my point. Genes/allelles/whatever that control the melanin in the skin are not the same ones that dictate the amount of melanin in your hair and/or your eyes. If that were the case my skin would be black to match the amount of melanin in my own hair and eyes, or I would be blond and blue-eyed to match the lack of melanin in my skin. My point stands.

Caelestius - 2 months ago
@Sharielane:

Posted By Sharielane at 1:30 PM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Posted By Count_Emiya at 9:16 PM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Posted By Sharielane at 04:12 AM - Thu Jun 01 2017

As a good example, skin, eye, and hair color are controlled by the amount of melanin in a character. This means these three attributes are linked. Selecting one - such as the eye color you want, will filter the available skin and hair colors to something that makes sense.

This is actually a bad example, because genes that control how much melanin is in your skin are not connected to the ones that govern how much melanin is in your hair and/or your eyes. If it were then all the mixed race people I know with dark skin and blue eyes are a lie, so too with all the "white" people who have dark/black hair and/or dark eyes, or for that case the handful of naturally blond people I know/have met with brown eyes.

I'm sincerely hoping that SBS is not constraining the mixture of genetics to prevent the matching of dark genes with light, especially if the character is "mixed", because of some stereotypical bullshit that people with dark X can't also have light Y.

There are numerous alleles responsible for color in humans, if all are dominant you see all dark colors, if all are recessive you see lighter colors in hair, eyes, and skin.

Your phrasing aside, genetics are very complex, but it would still take multiple generations, 2 at least of mixing with someone with blue eyes for instance, for someone with all dominant alleles to show a recessive trait such as blue eyes. Then of course there are mutations, but that's another can of worms.

"An allele is a variant form of a gene."

Thank you for your pointless correction of my phrasing. I hope that made you feel better. But how exactly did that deny any of what I said? Complex blah blah blah, multiple generations blah blah blah. In the end it had no bearing on my point. Genes/allelles/whatever that control the melanin in the skin are not the same ones that dictate the amount of melanin in your hair and/or your eyes. If that were the case my skin would be black to match the amount of melanin in my own hair and eyes, or I would be blond and blue-eyed to match the lack of melanin in my skin. My point stands.

I work with a woman who has extremely dark skin and naturally blonde hair. I'm sure she wouldn't be delighted to hear that her particular colouration doesn't come under the heading of "something that makes sense", haha.

Atlas Forgiven - 2 months ago
@Caelestius:

Posted By Caelestius at 07:47 AM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Posted By Sharielane at 1:30 PM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Posted By Count_Emiya at 9:16 PM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Posted By Sharielane at 04:12 AM - Thu Jun 01 2017

As a good example, skin, eye, and hair color are controlled by the amount of melanin in a character. This means these three attributes are linked. Selecting one - such as the eye color you want, will filter the available skin and hair colors to something that makes sense.

This is actually a bad example, because genes that control how much melanin is in your skin are not connected to the ones that govern how much melanin is in your hair and/or your eyes. If it were then all the mixed race people I know with dark skin and blue eyes are a lie, so too with all the "white" people who have dark/black hair and/or dark eyes, or for that case the handful of naturally blond people I know/have met with brown eyes.

I'm sincerely hoping that SBS is not constraining the mixture of genetics to prevent the matching of dark genes with light, especially if the character is "mixed", because of some stereotypical bullshit that people with dark X can't also have light Y.

There are numerous alleles responsible for color in humans, if all are dominant you see all dark colors, if all are recessive you see lighter colors in hair, eyes, and skin.

Your phrasing aside, genetics are very complex, but it would still take multiple generations, 2 at least of mixing with someone with blue eyes for instance, for someone with all dominant alleles to show a recessive trait such as blue eyes. Then of course there are mutations, but that's another can of worms.

"An allele is a variant form of a gene."

Thank you for your pointless correction of my phrasing. I hope that made you feel better. But how exactly did that deny any of what I said? Complex blah blah blah, multiple generations blah blah blah. In the end it had no bearing on my point. Genes/allelles/whatever that control the melanin in the skin are not the same ones that dictate the amount of melanin in your hair and/or your eyes. If that were the case my skin would be black to match the amount of melanin in my own hair and eyes, or I would be blond and blue-eyed to match the lack of melanin in my skin. My point stands.

I work with a woman who has extremely dark skin and naturally blonde hair. I'm sure she wouldn't be delighted to hear that her particular colouration doesn't come under the heading of "something that makes sense", haha.

I've met some people who would self identify as black but have light green eyes. It's always very striking

dada - 2 months ago

I´m so eager to get into this!!

Sagan - 2 months ago

A lot of people from the OCE region are feeling the hype. Extremely excited to see the individual tribe data.

While min/maxing is frowned upon, it's an enjoyable part of any game for me. Tribes is maybe the only area in this game where I can get some form of that. I'm aware of the part that says min/maxing will be frustrating, but I highly doubt that will be the case for me. :P

Either way, can't wait, and this is very exciting.

Oracle - 2 months ago

Great news as always. I'm curious how many of the committed groups believe they will have certain biomes so don't factor that in, and if most of the less frequent visitors will not have the ties therefore opt for biome above all. Will be interesting to see changes after the tribe updates and on selection.

Captain Alvord - 2 months ago
@Oracle:

Awesome DJ. Always like getting a peek behind the curtain and seeing how design choices are being made to make this a truly awesome and memorable game. Can't wait for the release of all the juicy details of each tribe. Will be helpful in helping narrow down my decision of what sort of county I want.

Posted By Oracle at 01:11 AM - Thu Jun 01 2017

Great news as always. I'm curious how many of the committed groups believe they will have certain biomes so don't factor that in, and if most of the less frequent visitors will not have the ties therefore opt for biome above all. Will be interesting to see changes after the tribe updates and on selection.

Domain selection will definitely be a crazy thing to see unfold. I'm a frequent forum visitor but have not participated in the dance yet. I'm putting biome/tribe choice first. Once I get my County in an area that suits me then I will begin the process of bonding with my fellow counts/countessess, my duke/duchess, and my King/Queen.

I'm sure many well made plans will be torn asunder by biomes, tribes, and the placement order of ones higher ups in their community. It'll be a good time to have some popcorn on hand. ;)

Xarkfleur - 2 months ago

My unconstrained, asymmetric, orthogonal theorycrafting has begun! > > Enjoyed this immensely!!

Xelkias - 2 months ago

Wonder whether there'll be differences in abilities between genders? For instance, female builds are typically weaker than males (IRL), will this cross-over into CoE? And if so, could this even be reversed where female builds are more adapted?

Ragnar_Nordskov - 2 months ago
@Xelkias:

That's not true I feel like.

Ecir_Edyah - 2 months ago

So this part makes me wonder:

"At the same time, to ensure we don't break the character models, some genetic sliders are bound to one another. That is, choices along one marker will often force a selection of another marker. This is to make sure we don't get grossly disproportionate characters, and to make sure there is internal consistency within the world."

I'm betting "grossly disproportionate" has a pretty strict and clean working definition in your mind since you've been grinding on this stuff---but it's still ambiguous to me. I could use some help with the context of "Internal consistency within the world," too. Maybe some examples would be helpful to clarify?

While some players may indeed dislike or fear playing a physically odd character (and this is no small consideration when you're objective is to get people to fork over money to play your generated avatars,) there's also the question of 'the eye of the beholder,' and the fact some of us RPers just might cherish the opportunity to play the misfortunate outcast whom others may regard as freakish. There's not many immersive fantasy settings out there that forget this inclusion for some thematic purpose or another.

It's a tough fence to straddle, I won't deny. But my question is how are you going to straddle it? What's your "Freak Factor"?

NoBull - 2 months ago

Awesome info - thanks Caspian!

Chroniclesofalias - 2 months ago

Nice DJ

sulu244 - 2 months ago

Awesome stuff! Keep up the good work guys!

Wrrynth - 2 months ago

Ty for no new information. Shame, was expecting some actual details on individual tribes.

promise - 2 months ago
@Wrrynth:

It's coming soon, expect to see it within a few days.

MusaKn - 2 months ago
@Wrrynth:

Gotta agree, but at least it's just the start

OrangeBoy - 2 months ago
@Wrrynth:

Posted By Wrrynth at 9:35 PM - Wed May 31 2017

Ty for no new information. Shame, was expecting some actual details on individual tribes.

Tryggered

A_Humble_Turtle - 2 months ago

I'm really digging this!

Chewychunga - 2 months ago

Thanks :) cant wait to choose them

Polite - 2 months ago

Thanks for the write up Caspian

CMDR Andariel - 2 months ago

Awesomeness, the Hype is getting real for me! Keep the updates coming!

hlenzen - 2 months ago

WOOOOOOO!

Huginn - 2 months ago
@hlenzen:

That's exactly what I thought when I read this! Been waiting for this DJ for a loooong time, and excited for what's to come later! :D