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[Your View] Systems Update - Resources, Travel, and Tiles


Mio
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i love nodes if that's what this post is about

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I can't read to save my life, so I've elected to narrow my posts down to three points, one for each section. 

 

1. The general outcry I'm seeing is to bring back resource pits. I agree. And I think if the playerbase is asking for an old favorite (and a convenience) to make a return, then we should listen to them, considering they are...well, the bulk of the server lmao. Besides, I don't think I've ever done a resource run that was RPly motivated aside from "we need this". I don't see why it's being pushed to an enforced thing, and spending mind numbing hours running around the map to find these resource nodes sounds like a time sink. 

 

2. I like the  CT idea. I feel like we should have speed boost on roads. I thought that was always a thing. I guess I'm learning now it's not(?). I dunno. I have no real opinion about CT, considering I rarely ever go there at all. That's just a personal thing, so take it with a grain of salt.

 

3. I like the idea of tiles being hand-drawn. Now THAT is a little piece of immersion I can get behind. It'd make sense for a nation to build around the area they find. Also, I agree with a few folks that tiles shouldn't be cheap. Other than that, I have no real issues with tiles. Mostly just take issues with nations as a whole concept. 

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On 12/26/2022 at 12:32 AM, Esterlen said:

This is a terrible system that not only resulted in so much of the map going unused, but also deprived nations of the choice to use it even if they wanted to. Instead, everything was crammed into a single tile, leading some areas of the map to have incredibly concentrated landscars and others to be perpetually empty and desolate. I want to see vast states with a number of different ecosystems and towns, not an urban agglomeration crowded into a single tile. The Helena-Rubern-Reza-Palatinate-Owynsburg-Avalain-Morsgrad megapolis was one of the ugliest, most immersion-breaking features I’ve ever seen on this server. Yes, nations having so many empty tiles is not ideal, but it’s infinitely better than the alternative. If you can’t come up with a fair mechanic to incentivise them to develop outlying tiles (And no, I don’t think increasing the bar for acquisition will necessarily help this), the status quo is preferable to reverting to last map’s kleinstaaterei.
 

 

City-States are the default mode of government since time immemorial. From the beginning of human civilization until now, the most stable arrangement of human habitation has been a group of interdependent settlements sharing a watershed, and in light of this Arcas's dense urban areas were probably the most immersive feature of any LoTC map. You can find this exact arrangement everywhere from the Rhine-Ruhr cities (the population center of the IRL state which inspired the Holy Orenian Empire), throughout the geography of Western Europe from the Netherlands to the Loire to the Po Valley, and all the way back through history to the Indus Valley civilization and forward to the industrial megalopoli of the Pearl River Delta.

 

Besides, at least in the Greater Helena Metropolitan area you had a decent chance of finding another player and striking up a conversation. At least Helena was a realistic and decently-populated city. At least the placements of these "megalopoli" made some sort of sense, as they were all intentionally built where players would naturally convene and close enough to each other that trade and conflict could arise spontaneously.

 

It also bears mentioning that all of the current nations originated as city-states, even the very old ones like the Orenian Empire - their development just happened in Aegis. I always felt like I've missed out on 

 

VAcCfBt.jpg

This takes us to the current ridiculous arrangement of land on Almaris. Why do any of these states exist? 

 

What bothers me about this map isn't the enormous megablobs of uninhabited land claimed seemingly out of a fetish for boreal forest or tundra or mountains. The arbitrary tile borders cutting through different altitudes and biomes. The exclaves and settlements connected to neither civilization nor fresh water. Or that the third power in humanity is stuck in the middle of the desert on another continent because all of the mainland has been claimed by perpetually-AFKing OOC despots. What bothers me is the map is so big you have to get to every city through a magic portal.


There is too much land, yet all of it is too precious to build anything new. Too much space in every city, yet an insistence that even the wealthiest citizens live as rentoids in impoverished Messy Medieval hovels or squalid Sutican tenements. Every single settlement is governed from the top down, by people on Discord, so it doesn't make any sense to join one unless you're already in with the ruling clique. This has created a map that is simultaneously empty and cramped, where building is tightly regulated and still hideous, where it is impossible for a man to have an acre of land and a half-dead mule without first having an in with the inexplicable floating Versailles of his nation's central government authority.

 

I won't belabor the preposterous dynasties created out of thin air from Augustus Horen's's nephew's grandson or Sigismund Carrion's senior agnate's first-cousin-17x-removed. But why would any sane person, understanding the childish politics of "EATO," think that the current brainmelted internecine conflict is worth fighting for? Why would my character die for someone's lawful claim to be Junior Prom Royalty at the Haense Prikaz? If Almaris was real, it would be consumed in a vast mutinous communist revolution. Impeccably-groomed streets, where the punishment for setting up an apple cart is eviction, would run deep red with Alstion-Morovar blood. 

 

All of this has happened because instead of paying any attention to realism we decided everything goes by Civ 6 rules - where we fight for "tiles" of land instead of actual resources or settlements or players - and these rules supersede anything that happens in roleplay. It's a rancid, ugly, awkward system that has created the most stillborn political situation in Descendant history. Return to Freebuild.

 

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On 12/23/2022 at 10:03 PM, Mio said:

Further before that, maps were predominantly freebuild or another forgotten / archaic system that would not be feasible on the current state of LOTC.

I forgot Atlas was ancient history and not like, you know, two maps ago. Let's not pretend like it has somehow become impossible in the interim.

 

On 12/23/2022 at 10:03 PM, Mio said:

Bringing back Resource Pits in a nicer fashion with 8.0’s Terra Node System. It has been a realization from many players' opinions and speaking among each other that the world of LOTC is so valuable and is what makes our server unique, which is why we should not limit creative capabilities as much as they currently are.

Nodes are disgusting and universally hated as the shitty knock-off Korean MMO feature they are.

 

We're literally on a game that became the best-selling game of all time for its mining and crafting. Let people mine and craft like they bought the game for. Let people break blocks to get shit.


Groups can handle their own wood, ore, etc. supplies through mining and lumberjacking in the real world. For resources that would be harder to gather without griefing the entire landscape, like terracotta and stone, use mine-worlds and let people pay open to entrances in their lands like in past maps. None of this OOC resource-island-purgatory thing please. If we do have a resource island it should be a real place ICly and be in addition to other ways of gathering resources (like from the actual map), not the only way. Aegis did it pretty well where you could buy resource pits that auto-regenerated and they were real RP locations--like you'd have a sand mine right outside the Orcish city that you had to buy a permit to. Probably a fairly complicated system to code and manage, so I'm not saying to do exactly that, but the idea of trying to keep resource pits an RP thing is one to take from that.

 

On 12/23/2022 at 10:03 PM, Mio said:

However, we would like to see your thoughts on the following:

Q: Would you like to see more Soulstone slots? What are possible benefits / consequences?

Q: Would you like to see the return of the Greater Soulstone for purchase from Cloud Temple? What difference should it have?

Q: Would you like to see a road placed before nations, or a road placed between nations shortly before launch? Why?

Q: Should there be a speed boost on the main roads?

Q: Do you foresee any issues with the removal of hubs and reliance on beacons/pillars?

 

Agree with getting rid of hubs.

1. More slots please. Pretty sure I have way less slots than I'm meant to have because of dumbass persona playtime requirements.

2. The Greater Soulstone was worthless because you lost it whenever you died. Make it permanent but cost a lot more. Would be a cool investment then.

3. Gotta have roads obv. We've done this whole "let roads be built after!" thing before in Asulon and they were literally never finished, because turns out trying to build a road across a number of different regions (and needing perms for all of them) is a nightmare that no one wants to take responsibility for. 

4. If it feels necessary, then the roads are too long.

 

Relevant things here IMO: The CT should be very small and easy to navigate. Sick and tired of these large confusing CTs with too much in them. 99% of players never explore that literal flex regardless. I think it'd also be cool if the CT was just kept off-map tbh. Tired of having a CT shaped circular tumour right in the middle of the map. That should be prime, contested real estate.

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MonkeyPoacher reminds me of a point. I do really really hope staff have meant it when they say it will be substantially easier for smaller little places to appear and be built up around the map.


 

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On 12/26/2022 at 6:56 PM, Borin said:

MonkeyPoacher reminds me of a point. I do really really hope staff have meant it when they say it will be substantially easier for smaller little places to appear and be built up around the map.


 

PFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF 

I mean, we can always dream right? But nooo, apparently those are "landscars" and we should all hang out in nation capitals instead. XD

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Ok, 

CONCERNING RESOURCES:
We have two overall camps, One, the Pit People which advocates for pits and other methods of easily obtaining max amounts of resources quickly so they can return to RP. They think nodes are bad because of map travel time and lack of quantity necessary to actually run things. Number two, we have the Node Nerds, who want to see more of the Map be useful and believe having in map resources helps with giving reasons to actually interact with Almaris. They think pits are bad because of immersion breaking and general OOCness, as well as destroying scarcity of certain resources.

Personally I believe both sides are valid. However, one is advocating for mechanics that avoid detracting from RP, while the second advocates for an Idea that could generate RP! Let me explain. If each tile has access to (one or more) resource nodes (Smol Tile advocate here), ones that are available for general use, that makes them valuable. That value could be increased if a playerbase owning AND MAINTAINING the tile in some way (through minas probably) is able to increase the yield or efficiency of those nodes... and then has an advantage compared to other populations on the server in generating a surplus. Similarly, tiles abandoned return to their base states and are still available for all to use as necessary. 

Now, am I saying the base states should be restrictive? Heck no, builds are expensive and having large amounts of blocks quickly is good. In fact that is what is missing from our current node system. 

So now all areas are unique. Valuable, because of the resources they can offer to everyone and the opportunity to gain a material advantage after investment. Settlements are made around the more special deposits because of their usefulness (Wood is everywhere but a premier Iron Mine is no small thing), and having a wider area of land under control both actually means something and gives tangible benefits instead of being a money sink. Businesses form, trade is created, and then those communities can decide how much they want to restrict access to resources they control. Maybe other nations need to pay a fine to access the coal deposits? 
Suddenly tile ownership isn't simply a flex or activity mechanic, but actively plays a role in the resources said nation or settlement can bring to bear. Fighting over empty land is silly, but a needed resource stockpile that translates to wealth and influence for the victor? Now that's some good RP reasoning for a conflict.

This isn't to say that building blocks should be gatekept. Much the opposite! Most resources, even more miscellaneous blocks, should be widely available so that players can, well, play. Rare  and more valuable nodes, on the other hand, can be treated differently than mycelium or birch wood. Does this mean geographical locations will impact build style? Yes, and that is perfectly fine! Dark Oak in the savannah shouldn't be impossible, but it should require more effort to build with resources that the region has no reason to have in abundance.

I for one would love to see a plethora of nodes out in the world for people to use. Maybe they are global cooldown and not individually instanced? Or maybe that's too much. Either way, it would give people a reason to interact with the world of LotC around them instead of just sitting in the plaza.


I might talk about the tile system and roads/travel later, but just letting the focus be on this for now.

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I wish to preface before any answer that I’m a new player to the community. I have no perspective on previous maps or systems and, if any, the only major gripe I have is the completely dysfunctional state of the economy on the server which is more or less driven by a complete lack of resource rarity and thus is leading to a lack of exchange between players over actual transactions outside of some more niche items or those with exist solely as gifts or roleplay items. This kind of makes breaking into the economy very difficult and, to a large extent, just not worth it. I would like to see the future map address how poor it is by giving a reason for money to actually circulate and be exchanged between players. As such, I'll address everything with this mindset as the map can be used for this purpose through affecting how the nodes work and how tiles are given value.

Q: Do you think there should be just one set of each building block or node? Or multiple? How would you scatter them throughout the world?

I think that, in combination with the desire to distribute resources around the map and give value to having particular tiles, that the scattering of nodes should be done with this in mind. As such, more common resources should have more nodes in more tiles with less common resources having less. Rare or unique resources may have one node, to the point where the rarest of things may only have one node in the world if there is a need for a resource that rare.

 

Q: Would you want to see different numbers on these building blocks? In yield or in harvesting time?

Yes. Some nodes could in themselves yield more. This means that if someone is on a tile with iron, say, then their iron may yield more than another tile’s iron. This would also help change and distribute the value of tiles.

 

Q: Would you prefer a system where you physically break the block rather than right clicking it?

This makes little difference to me if the whole thing is client-side and if it isn’t client-side there is the risk run of people hoarding and scalping. So I’m abstaining on this since the intentions aren’t clear to me.

 

Q: Do you think there should be a distinction between Niche and Common blocks?

Yes. Use distribution or yield to do this, or even the size of nodes or cooldown time. Some resources should be more coveted.
 

Q: Would you like to see a system, perhaps expensive tools paid for with mina, that increase your yield when gathering?

Yes. I would also like to see these tools be of specialist professions, probably mostly blacksmithing. I would just like to see more value in having particular jobs and more reason to buy things from people outside of gifts.

 

---

 

Q: Would you like to see more Soulstone slots? What are possible benefits / consequences?

Considering that the intention relayed is to make the make more reliant on SS, there should absolutely be more slots. It is not very good to change a system to rely on something more without adapting the thing being relied on to fit the purpose.
I think for benefits, having more ss slots would fit the lowered reliance on a hub like CT.
That said, there is mention of “a modified fast travel system that’s currently in thought” but without details on this it’s kind of impossible to conceive of specific pros and cons, aside from that more slots may make the system worth less to players.
 

Q: Would you like to see the return of the Greater Soulstone for purchase from Cloud Temple? What difference should it have?
Consider that it’s just recently come back as a reward for liking the server on MC this would cause a conflict between those two methods to get it, unless the purchase can be an extra buff. Perhaps the purchase of an extra ss slot, but only if the amount of slots is not natively increased for the new map. Otherwise, I don’t know.

 

Q: Would you like to see a road placed before nations, or a road placed between nations shortly before launch? Why?

Place the nations, then the roads. It’s weird the other way round and isn’t very natural. Nations may decide not to have direct roads to each other for some time due to their relations, and that should be an option for NLs in an evolving world. 

 

Q: Should there be a speed boost on the main roads?

Yes. It gives reason to use main roads and actual travel may become more important with more focus on pillars. 

 

Q: Do you foresee any issues with the removal of hubs and reliance on beacons/pillars?

People already rely on the rather heavily and that will continue. However, it is a massive issue to rely on pillars if ss slots don’t accommodate the new reliance. People having less access to move around the world freely, under such circumstances, might result in some frustration. Moreover, more heavy use of pillars might encourage people to ss to desired locations more when they know something is going on. ATM, sometimes people do choose to go the longer travel route. I’d hope the latter is the choice in the future, but nothing is a guarantee with a change.

 

---
 

Q: Should tiles be uniform in shape or arbitrarily drawn by hand (roughly following geographical features etc.) such as how they are on 8.0 (current)?

Always follow geographical features. I don’t think they necessarily have to be the same size either, as the size of a tile may also inherently add or detract from value. Small tiles with a very valuable resource may be worth more than large tiles with common resources. etc
 

Q: If they were uniform, which of the following would be preferred?

They should not be uniform.

 

Q: If they are not uniform or arbitrary, how else would you like to see them?

Discussed above, but largely decided by geographical features with the possibility for some tiles to be smaller or larger with the specific intent of influencing their value.
 

Q: What kind of tile upgrades would you like to see possible?

For tiles to have more thought and consideration placed into their inherent worth rather than improving their worth. Improvements should be made by whoever owns the lands within reason of what that land is capable of. I would like to see inherent worth created though size, the use of nodes and, of course, their geographical location and how that might benefit or detract from the defence of a nation.

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I've got some feelings about resources and the economy. 

 

For common building blocks it should be made easy to get them from nearly any place on the map. There's a big difference between things used to build settlements, and things that there can actually be economic activities around (iron, food, coal, gold, diamonds, this sort of thing).

 

 

So what if each tile had a few resources that it generated on a clock. A given tile might have an iron mine that once every 3 days generates a stack of ore to be mined, it might have a field that can grow carrots or wheat that mature once a week, it might have a grove that produces a specific plant or flower (alchemical and benign), or a quarry that has prismarine. But it doesn't have everything, to have a functioning, well equipped society either trade or expansion are needed. I think it should be fine for large nations to control land without rping in it regularly in little towns, because the server benefits from the concentration of RP massively. The way to account for this is to have those resource nodes be open to anybody who comes by, if a nation is over-extended then they aren't going to be able to harvest them before bandits do, and they're going to start feeling that bite. Theres massive ways that this creates rp that the current go-play-survival-minecraft system doesn't:

 

  • If a nation has farmers who go out to harvest those fields then great
  • If those farmers or miners get attacked by bandits because their nation is weak militarily or over-extended thats awesome
  • If they rally and send people out to defend the gold from the mine in their province then great
  • If they make treaties with their neighbours to respect each others' territories thats fantastic rp
  • If they're inactive and others start taking their food and resources then thats nature healing itself and the server self-regulating
  • If a nation is getting more players than it can feed/supply they're going to need to either trade for more resources or expand militarily
  • Theres now an actual reason to do villainy and bandit rp, which our current post-scarcity world doesn't have

Right now none of this happens much because there isn't a real mechanical incentive, and this isn't a crazy complicated plugin I don't think, it can pretty much be done with command blocks referencing a few variables on node regeneration time to be tweaked by staff when things need fixing, or adjusted to match server activity.

 

This was long and rambly, but I hope maybe it has some sort of an interesting idea. Right now production and prosperity on the server is about who wants to go play the shittiest version of survival single player minecraft you've ever seen for an hour, instead of being about rping in your nation, trading, forming treaties with your neighbours, and having a functioning military/society that can control resources and land. I think thats the fundamental issue here, and going to a system where economic resources spawn in on a timer could fix a lot of this. 

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I like your ideas about the ss. Three slots, CT and one that must be filled and an extra. If you have persona rolls/classes or whatever you want to call them a merchant could have extra ss slots. Just like a miner could collect more resources. And an explorer could travel faster or maybe see farther. I like the idea of choosing a class once for your persona that gives you a bonus.

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I'm late and not really active anymore but I think this is a good start. I reckon soul beacons should be more common than just having four across the whole map. Greater soulstones would be cool to see, but I frankly think making them mina purchases is a bit silly from a lore and gameplay perspective. Have them be a reward for something other than voting or mina, or hear me out, make greater ss the default.

 

Also tiles should not be squares, but for the love of god make tiles ROUGHLY the same size so that we don't have tiles the size of Everest and tiles so small I can barely fit my town in them :)

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