COMMUNITY - FORUMS - GENERAL DISCUSSION
Soul Chamber info for Forum people!
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Hiya folks! I know there's some of you that don't use Discord and there's been a recent rise in anticipation for some kind of news regarding the game. So, I thought it might be nice to post the info and discussions that the devs have put in the Soul Chamber channel from the official CoE Discord since the start of the year.

NOTICE - THIS IS FROM DISCORD AND NOT "OFFICIAL". THE INFORMATION IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE!

There's a lot here, so let's get going.


Posted By Serpentius on Discord

01.03.2019#Battlefields/Pitched Battles# (Thanks to SirApetus)

Caspian:RE: CDG on a battlefield, the designers and I haven't discussed battlefield combat recently, but as of the last we spoke, there wasn't any incap on a battlefield. This was to discourage people from "knocking others out" but not CDG in order to prevent the Bloodlust state.

Epicface: What's the Bloodlust state? Caspian: Bloodlust is a buff on a battlefield that makes it so you do not suffer spirit loss for X amount of time while on a battlefield. The only way to get the buff though is to die. :smiley:

HerbLord: So how would the spirit walking back to body be ... will it be the same? or sightly altered for battlefields? Caspian: So after your first death on a battlefield - taking a larger than normal Spirit Loss, you spend the next X amount of time not taking spirit loss. There's still the cooldown on "waking up" but no spirit loss. Note: Waerd do not get Bloodlust. This is one of the most significant reasons why Waerd do not do pitched battle. Each time they die they suffer spirit loss.

HlibSlob: But how does the system distinguish battlefield from just a 1v1 on a road? Caspian:@ HlibSlob With the Battle Management table. When a pitched battle occurs, the commanders can use tables to help manage and instruct the different units.

HlibSlob:So battles are like official organized events? O__o Caspian: Yes. Pitched battles are a game mechanic which uses the Battle Management table, or just "Battle Map." Without a table/map, it's not a pitched battle.

HerbLord: How do you access the battlemap... will it b only accessible to certain members of the army or can an opposing enemy sneak in and learn their battle strategy? Caspian: It's a physical object. It can be viewed by spies. Wiisdom: Will these battle management tables be in the kingdom or at the camps Caspian: At the camps set up for the pitched battle. They've limited radius.

HerbLord: How do you see one side winning the battle since everyone can respawn indefinitely... ? Caspian: Generally speaking, battles aren't won or lost by body count. There's generally other objectives involved. ie. If you're sieging a settlement, it's won by your ability to successfully siege it (Capture the Flag) If it's a joint pitched battle, it's generally who can get past the defenses and kill the other commander first (Kill the Commander). If it's a struggle over a resource location, it's generally won by being there long enough to claim the resource (King of the Hill). At some point, enough people will have suffered losses to a degree where they don't want to, or can't continue any longer. And then whatever the primary objective was will be completed.

Duffy de Concierge |⍲|: As long as people can respawn and fight there will be zerg and churn Caspian: @ Duffy de Concierge |⍲| There will be. But that partially offsets the problem of scale. 100 players on a battlefield can feel like 1,000. 1,000 players would feel like 10,000. As well, there's still an increasing death timer. So whoever does poorer will eventually start to run out of bodies.

Zenko:fox:: If destruction mechanics are as billed, protracted defense is viable. Caspian: Sieges will take hours, days, or weeks. Not minutes.

Kynlo - Vesenia County (Luna): Elyrian time, or ours? Caspian: @ Kynlo - Vesenia County (Luna) Our time. Bombahzet, Familiar of Zylphania: @ Caspian when you say Waerd don't get Bloodlust, does that mean even when defending? Caspian: @ Bombahzet, Familiar of Zylphania We want the Waerd to be a good defensive tribe. So the plan at the moment is for them to get Bloodlust while defending. So if they're physically within a radius around a settlement, they get the bonus. As a result, Waerd will generally be defensive, or raid/skirmish. But never be on a battlefield.

Caspian: The cultural penalty is "No Bloodlust." There's also "Bolstering." Waerd also do not get Bolstering on a battlefield. Epicface: Interesting. Even when defending, or not then? Caspian: The penalties don't apply while defending. :smiley:

HerbLord: but waerd get bolstering from all members in their settlement so thats like an inherent advantage when defending.. Caspian: ^ But they can't take it with them. Again, they're not for pitched battles.

Epicface: Does Waerd bolstering in general apply when they're not among their own settlement? Like can a Waerd be on the other side of the continent from their settlement-family but still be Bolstered by them? Caspian: No. Bolstering works the same. It's just that every member of their settlement is a "family member."


01.13.2019#NPCs/AI/Death/Exposition/Culture

Nimetau Vrinssh : Kai lets be honest 90% of ai promises are probably not going to come true Caspian : @ Nimetau Vrinssh that's a strange perspective. Do you believe we're liars or you just have an overactive imagination?

Nimetau Vrinssh : im going with the imagination as you don't seem to be liars. Caspian : @ Nimetau Vrinssh both are valid responses and I take no offense. I was just curious.

Nimetau Vrinssh : It just seems like theres a lot there to program into an NPC is all casp. ill be happy if you get all of it done but a lot of it seems out there to me Caspian : There is an entire area of computer science dedicated to creating artificial life and intelligent agents. If you forgo the need to have complex conversations with them, then creating realistic behavior patterns in an npc isn't hard. There isn't actually too much to it. It's very similar to what we do with screeps. For example, the NPCs have a hunger meter which goes up over time. Over some threshold and they start checking the distance to a food source over other tasks. At a higher threshold they'll even go great distances to get food. Then it's just a matter of memory and pathfinding.

Nimetau Vrinssh : So uh casp whats your take on this idea that letters still won't be used in game even with the information system since they can be intercepted? Caspian : @ Nimetau Vrinssh I think the information system makes it so some things have to be written down or communicated in dialog. People may travel to say it in person, but there is no way around the need to communicate ingame. I think the disconnect is on what people think AI is, what they think we're aiming for, and what the AAA studios did wrong (OCE) iSagana : @ Caspian any hints at how socially interacting with an NPC would happen? Would it be like Sims with a dialogue wheel? Would it be like some other "choose your story" games with a bunch of basic template options ("Hello", "My name is...", etc)? Or is it something different? Because A LOT of people truly believe they will be typing to NPCs and have fully fledged conversations with them in real time. Anything to help with that?

Caspian : @ (OCE) iSagana :skull_crossbones: I can say for certain that we don't have a plan to do plain-text dialog with NPCs. You're not going to be having conversations with them. When you aspire for that, people expect it to pass the Turing test or it's insufficient. I don't know yet what the team will finally decide on, but the expectation is that you'll be able to instigate conversation, or receive a request for conversation from an NPC and then use selected messages and topics in order to communicate. I don't know whether it'll be a wheel or a different UI when it's all said and done.

Kai Fernweh : I can observe you and determine your motivations and values. Making you exploitable Sildadia : That's true to an extent Kai, but people have effectively endless options to adapt, there's only so much any system can do unless it's self learning Caspian : @ Sildadia Ah. That's a great example. What you're referring to as "Artificial Intelligence" is actually machine learning. That's a very specific area of AI that allows a computer to change its behaviors and strategies based on learned tactics. That requires either a neural network, genetic algorithms that can evolve and change over time, or something else similarly complex. Machine learning right now sees most use in research, marketing, and other areas where the dataset is fairly straight forward. Meaning, it's easy to correlate inputs and outputs. CoE is going to have some elements of machine learning, but not in the AI behaviors. The NPCs won't be learning from your patterns of behaviors and adjusting accordingly. When we talk about NPC AI we mean NPCs behaving in a way that is more believable. Generally that means the NPCs are more aware of their environments, take in more inputs, and are able to make more complex, informed decisions as a result. So CoE will have more believable NPCs, and more complex NPCs, but I'm not planning "learning NPCs."

Sildadia : @ Caspian I think the difference between what people perceive as "good AI" vs "bad AI" is in how difficult it is to determine what it's primary drives are. That can be difficult to do with people, when AI drives are easy to determine they feel less "real" Caspian : @ Sildadia I agree. Even more than that, I think when NPCs are programmed to use paths, and use pre-determined algorithms, they become less believable and more exploitable. I think one of the main differences is that while we do have routines for things, it's all driven by NPC needs and goals. That, combined with sensing the environment and responding to stimuli results in NPCs that respond fairly differently in different circumstances, lending to a feel of unpredictability. (NA-E) Paoron Drake Ⓥ :fox::dragon: : So when one NPC is being brutally murdered next to an NPC shop owner, the shop owner won’t still be open for business? He’d run away or fight or something right? Caspian : @ (NA-E) Paoron Drake Ⓥ :fox::dragon: For sure.

BasstT : Would NPC AI be updated consistently as time pass? Caspian : @ Basst Absolutely. CoE has a different maintenance cycle than most games. We're not developing dungeons/raids, new quests, etc. So for us, maintenance mode (post-launch) is about developing new technologies, evolving the AI, and making the story engine capable of creating new and different story arcs

Nimetau Vrinssh : Then there are people who would find an exploit in the NPC code and not tell anyone because they want to use that at launch for in game gain :thinking: Caspian : @ Nimetau Vrinssh That's why we've got 2,500 Alpha Testers. There are those in that 2,500 who understand what makes a successful world and will communicate those exploits to us when discovered. Also, telemetry tells us a lot. If we see people suddenly start using a specific pattern, technique, skill, etc. we know to look deeper into why. More beta than alpha, as alpha is focused less on kicking things and hunting for bugs and more about providing feedback on the design and how fun it is. But between the two alphas, beta, and stress testing - plus Exposition, we'll discover quite a lot. Nimetau Vrinssh : Hey casp quick question about Expo will we be able to buy stuff with in game currencies during it or is it all EP? Caspian : Exposition is a soft-launch. There's limited combat and siege functionality initially, but otherwise there's full game functionality.

(NA-E) Paoron Drake Ⓥ :fox::dragon: : @ Caspian who’s going to get Prelyria access? Will alpha 1 follow Prelyria or be concurrent? Caspian : @ (NA-E) Paoron Drake Ⓥ :fox::dragon: We develop new mechanics and iterate on them in the prelyria client, and once we've verified the feature and signed off for final release, it will get migrated into the CoE client. To make this a more iterative process we've split functionality into two alpha stages. Alpha 1 focuses on the adventurer mechanics. Alpha 2 focuses on the kingdom, land management, and domain management mechanics. But our process is the same for both. So you'll first get access to the Alpha 1 features in our "Pre-Alpha" which uses the prelyria client. Then you'll see those features in Alpha 1. After that, you'll be back in Prelyria for Kingdoms of Elyria, testing the Alpha 2 features (which will still include the Alpha 1 features), and then you'll see those features in Alpha 2 Nimetau Vrinssh : Caspian how much EP is too much EP for gentry? Caspian : @ Nimetau Vrinssh Uh. I don't know how to answer that. That's like asking, how much money is too much money for a teenager to have. Depending on who you ask, any more than they need for food. :smiley: The short answer is: Our intention is that the EP that comes with your package is enough to customize your package. Anything beyond that is optional. More gives you more options, more flexibility, and allows you to play a bigger role at launch. For example, if you want to be a skill trainer, more EP can mean more exclusive or limited patterns or techniques known at launch for you to teach others. So really, there's no good min/max, it's just about what you want your starting experience to be as a creator of Elyria.

Kai Fernweh : How deep will NPC AI be able to learn? Like laws that change, or cultural changes, either over time or in different regions, if they travel Caspian : @ Kai Fernweh#3726 See my comments above. While our NPCs will be smarter and more aware of their environment than in many other games, NPC (machine) learning is a non-goal. We're not attempting to make NPCs that learn. NPCs have memory and their behaviors can change based on what they know. So they'll behave differently depending on who you are, your reputation, tribe, family, any organizations you're a part of., etc. NPCs will also behave differently depending on their own needs and goals, mixed with their personalities. And finally, they change their behaviors based on all of the above, modified by what's going on around them. So in the fact that they have memory, and fairly complex decision-making, they are more 'intelligent' than the NPCS is many other games. But they still don't have the ability to re-write their algorithms and heuristics on their own. There's no neural net for NPCs, nor any kind of genetic or adaptive algorithms. So in that regards, they're only as smart as we've made them. No emergent behavior here. Sildadia : Basically can you "train" the in game AI to register a bucket as a weapon as opposed to a tool? I won't know that for sure until I hit an innkeeper with a bucket several hundred times Caspian : @ Sildadia You cannot train the NPCs to interpret buckets differently, but you can train them to interpret you differently. They know a bucket is a bucket. They won't fear buckets, but they may fear you, whether you're carrying a bucket or not.

Sildadia : @ Caspian So it reacts to the identity asset as opposed to a non-identity asset? Caspian : @ Sildadia Correct. They have memory of actors and identities. Not all entities.

Sildadia : @ Caspian One more question related to identities then, is there some method of NPCs recognizing things associated with an identity as a threat from other identities, I.E. everyone that hits the npc with the bucket is from the bucket assault brigade, when a new member joins the brigade, is the NPC going to be fearful of that new member that HASN'T hit it with a bucket? More simply, does an organization have an identity to an NPC? Caspian : @ Sildadia Organizations have an identity. As do surnames/families, settlements, domains, and tribes. NPCs will also evaluate your appearance to determine whether they can identify your tribe or family by appearance, as well as your possible role/job/profession based on your equipment. So, while NPCs won't fear buckets, if they see someone wearing heavy armor, they will be more fearful.

Labbe, Master Alchemist : What about something like if all the barons men always wear bright yellow colors, and you suddenly throw something on with said colors? Will they then associate you with the barons men? Caspian : @ Labbe, Master Alchemist No. But if you're wearing a crest of the baron's men then they will associate. Labbe, Master Alchemist : Hmm, so if we want organized bandits we need a crest! Colors aren't good enough Caspian : @ Labbe, Master Alchemist Not currently, no. That would allow people to too easily copy the standard colors of another group and perform misdeeds.

Priestess : Would that work in an opposite fashion IE: you wear a crest of a group know for saving npcs would they treat you better? Caspian : @ Priestess Yes. Wearing a different crest could misrepresent you. However, creating a crest typically requires the glyph or sigil to do so. It's similar to the seal on the Monarch's ring. You generally need to have the items in your inventory necessary to accurately reproduce a crest.

Sildadia : Also with organizations having an identity the fact that you can only loot armor on permadeath (if I'm informed correctly) makes a LOT more sense to me now. Caspian :rage: Sildadia You are correct. Armor can only be looted on permadeath. Brudvir Stronk : that include gauntlets or just chest/legs @Caspian ? Caspian : @ Brudvir Stronk It includes a few equipment slots, but not all of them. * Incapacitation allows people to take anything out of your hands * CDG allows them to take items from your backpack, pat down your body and remove some items of clothing * Perma-death allows fully looting the body

(OCE) iSagana :skull_crossbones: : Even taking a ring sounds like a perma death requirement. Is that right? At most you could probably remove a cloak with CDG? Caspian : The last we discussed publicly, during a CDG you could remove hands, feet, and helmet. As well as remove items from a scabbard, or a backpack, as well as pat down pockets. So it would be possible to remove a ring during a CDG. Caspian : Think of a CDG as "attempted murder."

Brudvir Stronk : then technically there is no murder until permadeath Caspian : Technically, you are correct.

Brudvir Stronk : so by that standard no one can be charged with murder until they actually permakill someone Caspian : @ Brudvir Stronk Correct. Unfortunately, attempted murder has the same penalty... so. Brudvir Stronk : there is still a timer for being able to loot stuff correct? Caspian : @ Brudvir Stronk You've got a limited amount of time, yes. Caspian : Sildadia is saying if required permadeath to remove a ring, then attacking nobility would have to make each CDG permadeath. This allows us to create dramatic stories without having to always cause permadeath for influential characters.

Count Gin [Luna] : The last we discussed publicly, during a CDG you could remove hands, feet, and helmet. As well as remove items from a scabbard, or a backpack, as well as pat down pockets. So it would be possible to remove a ring during a CDG. So if Player (A)CDG'ed Player B) ,and player (B) still has soul time. There is a period of time where lootable items can be token out of there inventory ,but not there equipment slots? Meaning if I wear my best equipment all the time. I dont have to worry about losing it unless it's my last Soul. Caspian : @ Count Gin [Luna] That's correct. But this isn't a game where your abilities scale with equipment. Equipment is more a function of survival, as well as identity. So "best armor" still doesn't mean much. Count Gin [Luna] : Just carry no inventory besides food ,and water. Wear a battle raiding set ,and have all your team-mates wear raiding sets ,and pillage without losing equipment. Durability might be an issue ,but that just depends on how it works out. Caspian : Right. You can wear your 'best quality' equipment all the time, and either freeze to death, overheat, or be under-protected. Or, you can wear the most appropriate equipment, and be generally better-off. Durability is definitely an issue. As is equipment type. Keep in mind that we have slashing, blunt, and piercing damage, and different armor types mitigate damage differently. So even your 'best armor' might prove entirely ineffective in a fight.

Count Gin [Luna] : Is there a durability penalty on death? Caspian : There's a durability penalty on taking hits. The armor doesn't care whether you're unconscious or not. Count Gin [Luna] : This is some great ,and sad news for raiders I suppose. Caspian : I'm not sure what's great or sad about it. When you raid, you either win - and take stuff back, or you lose, and lose some (but not all) of your stuff. If you see a knight wearing shiny armor - you're on a battlefield. Hopefully in shiny armor also. If you see a knight in shiny armor and you're not on a battlefield, then he's a dumbass for wearing armor everywhere, as it'll negatively effect virtually all of his survival stats constantly

Count Gin [Luna] : So plate has negative effects for survival? Caspian : @ Count Gin [Luna] Most definitely. The equipment system uses 3 layers. Layer 1 is for managing homeostasis. Layer 2 is for protection, and layer 3 is from exposure or for combat. Each additional layer you wear impacts your survival stats more rapidly. If you're not going to be exposed to the elements, or in combat, it's punishing to be wearing armor or a full robe or cape. If you're not expecting to be in the wilds or in combat (so you're in town) it's punishing to be wearing armor, etc. You always want to wear the right amount of equipment for your needs. Belmont : Caspian... is putting yourself through that trouble of having the survival stats be negatively affected by constantly wearing arm or a good thing? because you can train those skills and your stamina that way cant you ? Caspian : @ Belmont Being able to withstand the additional heat of wearing armor isn't a skill. At best it's having higher stamina, but it's not something that can be trained sufficiently as to make you immune to the circumstances. It's a design choice. We want you to have to think about whether having to stop and sleep/eat/drink more often is worth the protection you get from the added layers of clothing.

Count Gin [Luna] : There body goes into the soul area. Waiting to be logged into. To prevent multiple offline deaths. Caspian : @ Count Gin [Luna] Huh? What's this about your body disappearing?

Count Gin [Luna] : Oh so the body doesnt dissapear on death? Caspian : No. You are always present in the world from the moment you create your character.

Count Gin [Luna] : -Scratches head- So if the body stays ,and no one can move it can it still keep it's equipped items on then. Since equipped items cant be token off until the characters permanently dead? Caspian : @ Count Gin [Luna] If it's permadead, it can be moved and looted. Count Gin [Luna] : But if it was CDGEd ,and still had soul time then it cant be moved? Caspian : @ Count Gin [Luna] That generally depends where you were CDGd. But if you're out in the wilds, then generally speaking, you can be dragged a short distance, or if you've got a bounty on you, moved toward a courthouse. Of if you've given people the ability to move your body they can throw you in a wagon and carry you away.

Belmont : Caspian, forgive me for straying from topic, but it would be nice to know how exactly bonuses/stats are handled with halflings. It would allow us to plan what we want to do with our lineage during KoE… Like the combination of two tribes... such as a brudvir and a janoan (will we still get an in built compass, will the child have normal poison resistance etc) Caspian : @ Belmont Oh. Tribes are made up of a set of genetic markers. Digital DNA if you will. Whenever you breed, you pick some of the genes, such as visual traits, and non-visual traits are randomly sampled. Many of the traits are numerical, in which case you'll get a range near one set of genetics or the other. In some cases it's boolean, in which case you'll either have the trait or you won't.

Count Gin [Luna] : If im in the middle of a city ,and I have not given permissions to anyone in my family or anyone in general with no bounty. Can I not be moved? Caspian : @ Count Gin [Luna] I believe the current plan is that if you're inside a settlement you can be moved to certain buildings in the settlement, like an infirmary. Belmont : But regarding the movement of a body, I hope you will be able to move a character body of a player who hasnt logged in atleast to a nearby bed... if they are in the middle of the town square for example..., (and is in stasis awaiting spirit walk) It would be cool if you can just press a button and you automatically pick them up and take them to the nearest bed... that way you cant exploit it to hurt players Caspian : @ Belmont Great feedback. Ill talk to the designers.

Brudvir Stronk : @ Caspian the reason you can't loot them is due to the loot timer is ended and gear is locked Caspian : A CDG body can have its inventory looted. Timer? There is a timer to get back to your body.

Brudvir Stronk : there was stated to be a limited inventory loot timer after you are CDGd Caspian : But a body lying on the ground has until the soul returns to loot it. The Waerd : @ Caspian don't know if you saw earlier, (if you did sorry). Are cultural benefits (such as the Waerd settlement chat) specific to tribe and belief? Caspian : @ The Waerd They are specific to the tribal heritage. When you have offspring, you pick what culture you want to teach the child.

The Waerd : So, even if a kypiq settlement adopted Waerd culture, they wouldn't have the benefits? Caspian : The cultural stuff applies to all families, of all cultures. It's how you determine which cultural as well as religious benefits you want to pass to your children.



2/26/2019 10:18:14 AM #1
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2.5.2019#Exposition & Kingdoms of Elyria

Caspian: Whether or not people will enter into Expo at the same time or tiered is something that's being discussed and debated internally as well. I think the debate you're having is a result of the internal debate and the fact that I pointed out potential issues the other day when asked about it in Discord.

It comes to this: What's the goal of Exposition and which approach better actualizes the goal?

Well, as it turns out there's actually two goals. The first is world-building. This is best accomplished by allowing each tier - nobility, aristocracy, and gentry to enter into Expo in a tiered way. This ensures that each tier has time to do some of their most important world-building before the next tier enters into the world. For example, if you're a count, and your job is to ensure a fair distribution of resources throughout your county, having gentry come in with significant EP and claim the land all of the natural resources are on will make it more difficult to create contracts post-launch.

Similarly, gentry that come in at the same time as mayors can potentially start claiming the land around the settlement in order to force a mayor to have to purchase the land from the people around them, thus putting the settlement in a poorer financial state overall, while potentially making those that sell the land a bit better of. As you can see, there's clearly some exploitable mechanics here.

The second goal of Exposition, however, is to create dramatic story through the establishment of conflicts. As it turns out, both of the scenarios I just described provide for interesting conflicts. So it's not a clear black & white. Caspian: If we tier the entry, we give the dukes, counts, and mayors a time-limited opportunity to claim as much as they can based on their EP in order to "get everything they wanted". If we don't tier the entry, then there's virtually no time for them to secure their domains and settlements and creates potentially too much conflict. So the team and I are playing out the various scenarios to determine which is ultimately more favorable and whether there is an alternate solution, such as simultaneous entry, but perhaps with other constraints, such as not allowing the claiming of valuable land for a period of time, or having dramatically higher prices for the land initially which gradually decline to make them more achievable.

At the end of the day, our goal isn't the individual fulfillment of each player, mind you. It's about creating a world that is believable and enjoyable for the people who come in post-launch. That is generally going to mean some degree of conflict, but settlements that have had enough time to use their EP that each feels unique and purposeful.

Caspian: @ Marovec V'ralt (Finn) Ⓥ RE: Kingdoms of Elyria. There's really three sides to it. One side we understand very well, the other side is still ephemeral.

First, KoE is about testing out the mechanics which are being introduced as part of Alpha 2. This includes kingdom, settlement, and land management, as well as sieging and battlefield combat. So at a high level, KoE is about giving people an opportunity to exercise those tools.

Second, KoE is about helping to shape and shake-up the political landscape a bit by giving players an additional opportunity for conflict and drama. Potentially even creating some new aristocracy (and unlikely nobility).

Third, KoE is about giving players something meaningful to do during the final stages of development by helping to write some of the recent history. We understand very well what #1 is all about. We also understand the principle of #3 and what it means. It's #2 above that's problematic. We still have the same design in mind for #2, but in truth, KoE hasn't been a big focus for us, as the mechanics that are a part of #1 aren't in development right now.

Marovec V'ralt (Finn) Ⓥ: @ Caspian Is how that all ties into Expo the ephemeral part? In other words, from what we understand, our titles and settlements are supposed to be fairly sacrosanct up until the PvP restriction is lifted in Expo. We have until that point to gather our communties, spend our EP, and build up our defenses, so to speak.

From what you are describing, in terms of "KoE is about helping to shape and shake-up the political landscape a bit by giving players an additional opportunity for conflict and drama. Potentially even creating some new aristocracy (and unlikely nobility)" seems to run contrary to that belief.

Am I misunderstanding something? Caspian: @ Marovec V'ralt (Finn) Ⓥ You are correct. That is the ephemeral part. Our goal is to give players the ability to change the landscape and history a bit, while simultaneously preserving what people have claimed during DSS.

Our most recent design I think captures that best, which is why we haven't delved into it further. Our current plan is something like Screeps. Players will enter into KoE and the aristocracy and nobility will take control of their domains and settlements. Then play will proceed with people able to invade, conquer, build, expand, etc.

Players will be rewarded with some kind of currency, for now assume EP, for building onto their land and maintaining it for a period of time. If a settlement or domain is invaded and someone is uprooted, they simply pick a new piece of land and start over again.

The person who invaded their settlement takes ownership, and now gains the same currency for holding onto the land, and more currency if they improve the land. So everyone is encouraged to build, not to destroy, but at the same time everyone is encouraged to expand and conquer.

Once KoE ends, ownership reverts back to the original owners, and changes made to the landscape would be semi-permanent with some of the stuff persisting into Exposition.

Again, this isn't a final design, but allows for both people to hold onto their settlements and domains, along with a degree of pseudo-randomness that accounts for the passage of time. Nothing here is final.


2.5.2019#Testing phases

Caspian: We have our path for testing. We have two phases of Alpha testing which are intended to be functional testing. The focus isn't on bugs, but on gameplay mechanics. It's an opportunity to validate the game is fun, and make changes as necessary to ensure the best possible design.

Alpha 1 Focuses on the adventurer tier. The mechanics in Alpha 1 will focus on survival, exploration, combat, and crafting. It's generally considered to be most of the features players would use as adventurers

Alpha 2 Focuses on the gentry, aristocracy, and nobility tiers with mechanics such as land management, housing and settlement building, as well as domain and kingdom management.

After Alpha is Beta. Beta is about finding bugs and ensuring as smooth of a launch as possible. It is again divided up into two phases.

Beta 1 is about finding bugs that are unrelated to stress or latency. The focus will be on UI/mechanical bugs that are not time-critical, such as crafting, settlement and domain management, survival, etc. Beta 2 is about finding bugs that are related to stress or latency. The focus will be on combat and other high-action activities.

We chose to sell access to the various testing phases at various price points as a way to gate/meter how many people would be in each testing phase. As a result, there are, for example, just over 2,500 people with access to Alpha 1. The numbers then increase rapidly up to Beta 2/Stress Test.


2.23.2019#Skills system

Caspian: I'll go in depth in a DJ, but the short of it is, we imagined a hierarchy of skills mostly due to our previous experience with RPGs. But our diagetic approach to our user experiences requires things like techniques for combat. Meanwhile crafting still has techniques but also has stations, patterns, etc. But our tracking skills like ... tracking and forensics didn't fit the same mold nicely. Neither did many of the guile skills. At the end of the day we realized that we actually had a few different set of user experiences which we had somewhat artificially forced to use the same base system. We've instead separated them into their own domains or areas, each with their own system of advancement, UX, and UIs. We continue to iterate so that each system is intuitive, but separating them allows us to really tune each one to make it especially entertaining. Caspian: For example, the screen you use to customize your personal martial style doesn't need to look anything like the recipe book you use for crafting, or the knowledge base or journal you use for tracking what your character knows. Caspian: We now use your advancement in each of the systems to define a soft archetype for your soul, etc. So even though the UI/UX and advancement mechanics are different, we can still say that someone who has trained a lot in the martial system is a Champion, while someone who has trained exclusively in the crafting system is a Producer. Forensics and tracking are planned to be observation based UI/UX. Tracking people about identifying the signs of travel, using your knowledge to pick out the tracks, etc.

Forensics is also a visual aid, but is more like two truths and a lie. The environment might provide information, and you must deduce from your character's knowledge which information is incorrect.

Epicface: Huh. That is fascinating. Makes a lot of sense, though. So for those skills would there still be different techniques, or is it more straight up based on the environment, type of tracks/clues, and character knowledge?

Caspian: @ Epicface the latter. There might be things from alchemy that you might use in your information gathering, but no techniques directly in that system. Caspian: As an example. It's about acquiring knowledge through different means and then using that knowledge to perform deductions. In case you hadn't noticed, we're taking a Sherlock Holmes approach to Forensics. We are free to do it on a per system basis. There just needs to be some metric by which we measure competency. We are still iterating on the new skill systems, their paths of progression, and their unique user experiences, but I suspect we'll be making significant progress on it over the next few weeks.


2.23.2019#Religion

Caspian: Religion is a mechanic. But it is a closely guarded set of secrets. But I'd say it's safe to assume we at least track and quantify religious devotion. Whether that has any effect will not likely be revealed. Religion, devotion, and divinity are things we have intentionally kept quiet about for years now.

It is a specific, dedicated play style meant for those people who want to explore a more esoteric part of the game. Religion is not cosmetic. It has mechanics associated with it, and clerics, Paladins, sages etc. of the different religions is a thing. Even if they may not know whether their deeds have meaning. You gotta have faith faith faith...


2/27/2019 8:43:26 AM #2
+4

Thanks, Raven.

Note to any mods who may be reading: It might help the perception of transparency to transcribe the contents of the Soul Chamber to the Forums. I understand what is in there is not final, but it would help to inform those of us who are not habitual Denizens of Discord to what of substance is happening behind the scenes.

I actually think a Soul Chamber echo section on the Forums is a reasonable idea, similar perhaps to the DJ section.


4/17/2019 9:05:05 PM #3
+1

3.18.2019#Bees

Draguta: What is the search range of bees? Snipehunter : It's a 3 parcel radius (more for Cardinal bees)

Draguta: How much honey can 1 hive produce in 1 Elyrian year in a good harvest yield? Snipehunter : Not sure yet Draguta, that's a balance thing we haven't had a chance to look at. But our starting position is "something close to what a hive can produce on Earth in the same timeframe."

Draguta: Does the 3 parcel range count diagonally? And does the parcel that the hive sits on count as one of the parcels in that range? Snipehunter : That 3 parcel radius is a 64*3 meter radius, so not three parcels diagonally, exactly. Oh also: with a range radius of 3 parcels, a bee has a search area of ≈30171.86 meters. Most likely they would range within a cube that is 6 parcels wide, 6 parcels tall, and 6 parcels long. (6x6x6 parcel cube)


3.31.2019#Legendary Taverns - "The Free Mann"

Caspian :cloud:: The Free Mann is in the North(west) duchy of the grasslands along a pilgrimage route. It is not along the border. It's more centrally located in the duchy. Caspian :cloud:: In case anyone missed it... The Free Mann vanished from the store today 45 seconds after being enabled on Angelica.

B⍲sherToday: how much was it? Caspian :cloud:: Like the Last Oasis, the Free Mann was $1,250.00. (all of the legendary taverns are the same price, AFAIK)

Count Zimmah IX: Legendary has nothing to do with quality in CoE. However quality may affect public opinion. Epicface :evergreen_tree:: That's untrue, according to the EP store post unless I misunderstood it

Snipehunter :cloud_lightning:: The 13 are legendary quality taverns as well as legendary in reputation. However prime the tavern, the shifting wants and interests of the populace will be what deems them legendary in reputation.

Caspian :cloud:: @ Snipehunter :cloud_lightning: A lot of what makes them legendary will be the lore available about them. When people jump into the game, they're going to head to what they know... including the taverns we've written about. That won't change. But people may find the owner has run the legendary tavern's business into the ground. :confused:

Snipehunter :cloud_lightning:: Oh yeah, I didn't mean to imply the 13 would lose their historical significance! I just wanted to call out that history alone won't keep them popular - you have to run the place well, too. Continued... Rhaegys: place it in the middle of the desert away from all oasis... so when they burn your tavern they die trying to get away from the desert :smile: Caspian :cloud:: @ Rhaegys Its pre-placed.

Count Gin [Fortuna]: Question if I have the tavern am I forced to pick a county in borderweall?

Caspian :cloud:: @ Count Gin [Fortuna] No. You just own the deed to a tavern in someone else's domain.

Count Gin [Fortuna]: Will they be able to take it from me? Via bull taxes? Or through attacks? Caspian :cloud:: @ Count Gin [Fortuna] Not legally.... But that doesn't mean they can't. Bad stuff happens.


4/17/2019 9:06:42 PM #4
+1

04.08.2019#Legendary items & Relics

(NA-E) Gravev: But really @ Snipehunter :cloud_lightning: weee talkin about legendary items and relics and how much of a diffeeence there is and what makes em that way?

Snipehunter : That's an interesting topic, @ (NA-E) Gravev - at the most basic level, what sets a relic apart from an item, even when they are both legendary, is that a relic is a piece of a bygone age and perhaps functions in ways that mann doesn't quite understand. (Especially when they're literal relics) They can appear to perform miraculous feats.

A legendary item can sometimes be a relic too, but generally a legendary item is a legendary item because it has a history attached to it and that history is in some way inspiring, or renown, or infamous, in a way that is passed on to its wielder. That might be as a simple as "this is a perfect weapon forged by the world's best smith using bright iron found in the heart of a dead volcano, and anyone who possesses it obviously someone of caliber" or it could be more like, "that is the mace of Augathyn, slayer of giants, who once held that very weapon when she stood in defense of bas'tyranth, alone against the horde. Only a hero could possess such a weapon!"


04.19.2019#Settlement Land Ownership

Caspian :cloud:: Ok folks. I'm sure this has been stated here in Discord before, but I'll go ahead and state it again.

When you incorporate into a settlement, land is transferred from the owners over to the settlement. It becomes the property of the settlement to do what it likes with. The settlement owns the land.

The leaders of the settlement, generally a village or town council, can vote on stuff, with voted weighted by how much land was contributed to the settlement. Like stocks in a company. The more land you contributed to the settlement, the more your vote is worth.

The settlement can choose to sell the land back to the owners, to other people, or to hold onto it as settlement land. If they sell it back to others, it's still incorporated, but is now privately owned. The settlement has no control over what happens on that land, but can collect taxes based on the sale of the land back to private owners. This private property can be used by the settlement as a source of income through property taxes.

If the settlement wants to grow, it must either purchase the surrounding land directly from the count as incorporated land, or must purchase it from private individuals who own the land in order to annex. If they purchase the land, then those new land owners potentially also get a vote in how the settlement is ran.

As to "Mayor" titles. They have a controlling interest in the settlement as though they owned a certain % of the land before it became a settlement. But all land in a settlement is, by default, owned either by the settlement itself, or has been sold back to NPCs as privately owned land. Any land owned by the settlement can, at the desire of the settlement leadership, be sold back to the mayor or councilmembers. . mayor sadamune: ah so technically as mayor i can actually buy all the land myself Caspian :cloud:: @ mayor sadamune You can, but it would be pointless. That's how the settlement generates revenue. If you're just selling land to yourself, um, there's no revenue.

Duke Nimb Zephyr Ⓥ:moyai::sunny:: @ Caspian :cloud: can land ever be unincorporated or a settlement dissolved? Caspian :cloud:: @ Duke Nimb Zephyr Ⓥ:moyai::sunny: There's no plan at the moment to do that, no.

Governor Kynlo Accardi - "Caspian :cloud:Oggi alle 01:10 @ mayor sadamune You can, but it would be pointless. That's how the settlement generates revenue. If you're just selling land to yourself, um, there's no revenue. I mean, you could buy it all back to guarantee control, then just rent it out instead of selling."

Caspian :cloud:: @ Governor Kynlo Accardi In order to "buy it all back" it cannot be owned by NPCs, etc.


04.25.19#The Waerd

Snipehunter :cloud_lightning: : You know, as I review the meme channel this morning, I am reminded that one of the things that always makes me shake my head is "The Waerd have no property rights." That's just a gross misunderstanding. If your neighbor borrows your lawnmower, you didn't lose your lawnmower. If your family members use your dishes, you didn't lose your dishes. It's not the rights to your property that is shared - you still own what you own - it's just that you give your family permission to use your stuff when they're hanging out with you... and your family is really big.

Ikkerens: An example I thought of earlier is Amsterdams community bikes. You can take them, but there is a reasonable expectation that you return them. Snipehunter :cloud_lightning: : Yeah, good example. In our case it's even more explicit. They can't take it off your property. Like, your neighbor can't even borrow your lawn mower unless they want to use it to mow your lawn. :smiley:

Tarvald: Snipes are you tellin me the Waerd are basically 1950's America suburban lemme borrow some sugar plz. Because that would reaaaaallly mess with Anatar Snipehunter :cloudlightning: : lol kind of Tarvald? Not really though, it's just a close example: If I'm a waerd in a waerd settlement, and I want to learn blacksmithing. I can go to the forge, use the forge, use the tools there, etc. But I can't carry those tools away from the forge without explicit permission. . Tarvald: Snipes, I do believe the concern though is that since anyone in the settlement can walk up and use it that a player is likely to just walk away with the tools, and you wouldn't be the wiser as to who did it unless you specifically had some Weard NPC's watching napødyn: So when you go in a store and take their money and buy something in the store with it, as long as you don't leave with the money you good aye :wink: Snipehunter :cloudlightning: heh, exactl-- wait.... :HrothiThinkElsy: No, not really - You set rights for stores explicitly, so they're an exception to the default rights settings.

Marovec V'ralt (Finn) Ⓥ: Snipehunter :cloudlightning: Since you happen to be on the subject of "rights", have you all hashed out whether the leader of a settlement will be able to "filter" who benefits from the settlement perks like food and water? I.E. Only "citizens" get the free food. Snipehunter :cloudlightning: :rage: Marovec V'ralt (Finn) Ⓥ At the moment it doesn't work that way. Those benefits are provided to the incorporated parcels within the radius of the structures that provide them. If you're on one of those parcels, you would receive the benefit. Explicitly reserving those benefits for citizens is an interesting idea though; it's just not how we have it designed presently.

Ikkerens: Out of curiosity, how would the waerd deal with it if another tribesman broke the item whole using it? Snipehunter :cloud_lightning: : @ Ikkerens At the moment, that'd be up to the folks involved; there's no explicit mechanic to handle "hey you borrowed my ladder and broke it you jerk!" (Though if you break an NPCs [thing] they're not going to be happy about it or you.)


5/10/2019 9:34:09 PM #5
+2

05.01.2019#Qindred Lore#

Protey: In the past you have said that Sanguinis made Aiden's mother. Did Sanguinis do this alone, with Luna, or with someone else?

Caspian: Heh. Ok. Then I'll just say - Sanguinis created her on his own. Much the way Terra created Selene.

Caspian: And still nobody has picked up on the subtle hint of trouble there....

Protey: Well, you mean besides Daemon having a kid with his sister? Daemon is the kid of Sanguinis is he not?

Caspian: Yeah. Oh, you mean because Sanguinis is his father.... Strangely, Sangunis is his father, but his wife is not his sister... there's no "blood relation" between himself and Daemon's wife....

Caspian: Now we're getting dangerously close to an important secret....

Protey: strange that you said "Daemon's wife" instead of "his wife"

Caspian: With respect to Sanguinis. Daemon's wife was created by sanguinis... but she is not his child. Just like Selene was not Terra's daughter or sister....

Caspian: Ok..... I suppose you guys have waited long enough....

Caspian: Who is the Qin of Life?

Rinkuji: Ao

Caspian: Right. Ao was given the ability to create life from his maker Angelica. All beings who are children of Ao have that ability.... hence why Terra, Kernos, etc. have the ability to create life. But Torra, Daemon, etc. only had the ability to change things... not create things. So if only the descendants of Ao can create life... how did Sanguinis do it?
Caspian: In the affair between Ao and Luna, who were the two people most impacted?

SirApetus: Mann and Angelica.

Caspian: Close.... Angelica and Sanguinis.
Caspian: Angelica unleashed her wrath upon the world. She cast Mann out of Haven and took away the sun.
Caspian: But Sanguinis..... Sanguinis had always felt inferior to Ao... and when Ao took his wife, he felt it right to take something in return.... Something from Ao.
Caspian: Heh. I've given you enough for now.... but there are more origins in the affair of Luna and Ao than just Mann.

Protey: Didn't Luna create Sanguinis by herself though?

Caspian: Yes. But Sanguinis isn't strictly speaking "alive." Luna lacked the ability to create beings the same way Angelica could. So it's her own darker version. Sanguinis is, after all, the Qin of Death. He's essentially the Grim Reaper.

Protey: Thank you for humoring me Caspian.

Caspian: No problem. :smiley: You guys are getting very close to some important, although orthogonal creation lore.

waerd#164: Who participated in the first and second God's war?

Caspian: To answer your question, the first Godswar was largely fought between the first two generations of Qin, and was largely a battle between Angelica and Luna, along with their offspring. The first godwar began unofficially with the affair between Ao and Luna, but officially when Angelica took away the sun and the heat of the world. I believe the third generation was also involved, but not all of them. Some were too young. I'd have to check my notes. Collectively though, these three generations were the antepyrovians - those who existed before the fire.
The Second Godwar was started when Aiden began his attempt to gather the primal relics from his ancestors. It was quite some time later as the world had become far more populated by the Children of Mann.
Caspian: Remember, Aiden was not a child of Mann, and was thus timeless and ageless, as are all the other ancients.


5.24.2019#Sister-city monuments

Snipehunter :cloud_lightning:: It's in the statues. When you build a sister city monument you specify the sister city. If said sister city also builds a monument and specifies you, the bonuses take effect.

Snipehunter :cloud_lightning:: "city" in this case just me being lazy with terminology, there isn't a size requirement on your settlement.


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