Author Topic: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size  (Read 2727 times)

Zakky

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Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Topic Start: March 14, 2019, 12:03:40 AM »
I've been thinking... with all the recent changes, where will this game end up in?

Large vs Small Realm sizes:

At the moment there are codes that discourage realms from being large while devs are allowing realms to merge at the same time. The devs have been saying they want to increase the density yet the game mechanic doesn't really encourage it much. It certainly discourages realms from being too small.

I think we can all agree, small realms are not good for the game for now. More people you have, more events you will get. That is a fact. Luria Nova is probably the best example of this. Before its split, it was one of the most active realms. After the split, both Lurias aren't as active as they once were despite them being connected through a large guild. The problem with this system is that the game doesn't really support the guild system that much. For Luria's current system to work, the game needs to allow nobles to join certain guilds right off the gate when they create their characters.

Since that is too much work, why not just encourage realms to be larger for now? I think 30 chars should be the new minimum. We already have the density limit at 1.7 (Maybe it will go a bit higher in time) and that should be more than enough limit. But for now we have another layer which discourages realms from getting large called 'base tax rate' which changes as you require more regions. I think the current version was added when the devs wanted more realms to be created? At one point, there was some push toward single city realms thinking that would encourage more conflicts. I think we now understand tiny single city realms are just not going to work. So why not remove base tax rate limit which pretty much hits bottom at 20 regions and cripples large realms. I think the game should go on with less realms to increase the activity level first. Once realms become full of people, they will fight among themselves and split even without codes or dev interventions.

Vita`

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #1: March 14, 2019, 02:33:00 AM »
We need to hit a middle path, not go back to the large realm extremes of a few years ago which were just as much an issue as not enough nobles in a realm. You need enough nobles in a realm to sustain activity, but not a realm so spread out over so many regions that it takes forever to march to war. This requires accepting less realms and less regions overall and pushing realms closer to one another. That requires player participation. Mergers, nomads, and such are tools to help players do that.

PolarRaven

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #2: March 14, 2019, 02:45:25 AM »
I do not believe that this is the real concern.
Map size VS player base seems to be the real problem.

Some people prefer to be in a smaller realm where their influence will have more weight, while others may be happy to be part of "the herd" and follow the direction of others. 
This will always be the case.

We already have an island where there is only large realms.  The war island. 
As we all know, this island will see a "winner" sooner or later and need to restart.
On this island, I feel that I am only a follower and that is OK, because that is what I have come to expect from this island (and larger realms in general).
I quit the war island once or twice in previous versions for exactly that reason, I felt my input was limited to following orders.
This island has also shown that you may limit the ability to form alliances, but anyone who thinks that there are absolutely no alliances on war island is just fooling themselves. 
Their armies may not be able to work together, but survival dictates that their realms will work together.

Large realms can only lead to two possibilities, a "winner" or smaller realms breaking off to form new (smaller) realms.

Lets look at the larger realms on other islands (from the viewpoint of an outsider).

BT - Obia'Syela
- 30+ nobles buried in the far south of BT with no neighbors.
- As far as I know, the only real interaction there is fighting rogues, expanding to realm density, and chatting religion with their realm mates.     
- future prospects include fighting more rogues, chatting more religion, and expanding to the point where they max density or decide to split off into smaller realms.

DWI - Westgard
- 30+ nobles in the NW of Dwilight with only one bordering neighbor who is an ally.
- Main goal here is to fight rogues while expanding until density max is reached and that is how they like it.
- future prospects include more of the same unless someone comes close enough to bother/interfere with them again (Tol).
- likely to split off a new realm once their density is reached.

EC - Perleone
- 30+ nobles in the south of EC.  Was pretty exciting in the building of the realm, swallowing up and coercing surrounding smaller realms.
- formed/allowed smaller realm of Sydgard to exist now sitting neutral in the great (and mostly stagnated) north vs south war.
- future prospects include picking a side in the NvsS war.  They could certainly turn the tides either way in the conflict, or any action by them may blow up in their faces and have both north and south join together to face them.  who knows where this will go.

The above is just my quick thoughts on how I see these larger realms from the point of view of a player that prefers smaller to mid-sized realms. 
When you look at the EC, it is actually two larger alliances fighting while a third "realm" sits neutral watching for a reason to act. (similar to War Island?)

So, now we have several large realms committed (by game mechanics) to being large realms unless they can convince half of their nobles to group together to form a new realm. 
They are "stuck" with what they have unless they commit to long distance wars.


Now lets look at the other end of the scale, small realms.
There are so many smaller realms, that I will not give breakdowns like above with the larger realms.

Smaller realms have less people and therefore have less room for inter-realm communications.
They do not have enough nobles to properly wage war on their neighbors, unless they join with other realms.
With the density mechanic in place there is no room to expand any larger than most of them already are.
Most smaller realms are at their max density and this restricts most to barely surviving. 
They need more nobles to expand, but most nobles will avoid joining a realm that appears stagnated (most smaller realms qualify for this description).


So, what is the answer?  I don't really know, but as a player that has been around for many years now, I am pretty sure that more restrictions is not the answer. 
It seems that we keep getting more and more restrictions that seem only to add to the problems that they are trying to fix.

In a perfect world where we could have the player base of years ago, the current "configuration" of the game would probably be great.
In a perfect world where we could have a large group of devs dedicated to building the game to its current needs, I would suggest new maps that were designed to meet the needs of the current player base.

The current maps were designed to be played by a much larger player base, while designing smaller maps to accommodate the current player base is just not feasible for the small (though dedicated) group of volunteer devs that we currently have.

Thank you to all the devs that donate their time and energy into keeping the game up and running while trying to make it a fun place for all of us players that remain. 
I am sure that there are days that you feel unappreciated for all the work that you do put into the game.

Zakky

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #3: March 14, 2019, 02:51:16 AM »
Is there anyway to just combine existing regions to reduce the total number of them?

Like combining region A to B? Just combine all their stats? From pop to gold and food?

I don't see the stat part being the problem but routes might become rather horrible.

PolarRaven

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #4: March 14, 2019, 04:25:45 AM »
I can't say for sure, but from chatting with Vita a while back, I got the impression that things like that take direct intervention by the devs on a region by region type involvement.  LOTS of work for our overworked Devs.
Likely easier to just design a new map (which is also a LOT of work, region by region, new database?)
Not sure how he described it but certainly = Lots of work.  :)

Zakky

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #5: March 14, 2019, 04:31:52 AM »
If we can't reduce the number of regions, maybe changing their region type to something like badlands which cannot be controlled would be nice. Just do it across the whole map to reduce the total number of controllable regions.

PolarRaven

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #6: March 14, 2019, 04:43:31 AM »
Well, that's an idea we did not discuss.  Might work.
Permanent Rogue regions or clusters of permanent rogue regions scattered throughout the map.

Vita`

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #7: March 14, 2019, 04:55:46 AM »
While I may not agree with every particular detail, I think thats well-explained, PolarRaven.

Probably less work than a new map, but still a considerable amount of work.

I've thought about reusing one of the old region statuses to blight, freeze, tundra what have you regions to effectively mark them as unable to be entered at all. But I've generally thought the playerbase would prefer to have flexibility to decide what parts of the map they want to use than to semi-permanently disable entire sections of the map forcibly. It also requires us to manually re-enable the regions if the playerbase grows versus the code-based elements like density that would allow a(all) realm(s) to grow or shrink dynamically in response to playerbase. Generally with the fewer volunteers we have, relying on manual responses by volunteers means slower changes, so I prefer automatic dynamic changes. Hence the flexible changes based on density with each takeover limits or rogue code.

Ocean Yong Kiran

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #8: March 14, 2019, 07:51:11 AM »
While I may not agree with every particular detail, I think thats well-explained, PolarRaven.

Probably less work than a new map, but still a considerable amount of work.

I've thought about reusing one of the old region statuses to blight, freeze, tundra what have you regions to effectively mark them as unable to be entered at all. But I've generally thought the playerbase would prefer to have flexibility to decide what parts of the map they want to use than to semi-permanently disable entire sections of the map forcibly. It also requires us to manually re-enable the regions if the playerbase grows versus the code-based elements like density that would allow a(all) realm(s) to grow or shrink dynamically in response to playerbase. Generally with the fewer volunteers we have, relying on manual responses by volunteers means slower changes, so I prefer automatic dynamic changes. Hence the flexible changes based on density with each takeover limits or rogue code.

Can you not just put a flag on each region, in database. Then flip flag.

Manual, yes, but less work than the post you just write

Vita`

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #9: March 14, 2019, 07:53:04 AM »
Quote
But I've generally thought the playerbase would prefer to have flexibility to decide what parts of the map they want to use than to semi-permanently disable entire sections of the map forcibly. It also requires us to manually re-enable the regions if the playerbase grows versus the code-based elements like density that would allow a(all) realm(s) to grow or shrink dynamically in response to playerbase. Generally with the fewer volunteers we have, relying on manual responses by volunteers means slower changes, so I prefer automatic dynamic changes. Hence the flexible changes based on density with each takeover limits or rogue code.

Ocean Yong Kiran

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #10: March 14, 2019, 08:12:41 AM »
Yes, but from the things I read, the player base deciding is not working so well?  :D

Half will make compact, half will spread out, everything not working at best.

I think PolarRaven says something that is universal truth - too many rules does not make better results. It is like economy; more you try to make it go in one direction, more it goes in other.

I think now I understand better what people say to me about what is Battlemaster. They want not the game of exploration, they want the game of realm conflicting.

But your maps is maps of exploration. Why does old player who is king and never want risk want to make conflict when half the map is empty for conquest instead?

For game of conflict, War Island is correct. Tight together, more nobles than regions, must fight to get bigger.


Zakky

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #11: March 14, 2019, 08:25:03 AM »
You can't expand beyond 20 regions in this game. Also there just aren't enough people to expand that much even. There aren't anything special about rogue regions so people don't bother exploring them.

If the devs really want to minimize the size of realms, although it sounds tedious as hell, you can just reduce all non-human owned regions to Storms Keep's level. 100ish gold and 100ish food for all non-human regions. Nobody would bother taking them.

Ocean Yong Kiran

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #12: March 14, 2019, 08:35:42 AM »
but still then you must travel across them, and they block you from taking the next realms regions for your own

it is more than number of regions, it is also size and shape of map

Zakky

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #13: March 14, 2019, 08:48:32 AM »
but still then you must travel across them, and they block you from taking the next realms regions for your own

it is more than number of regions, it is also size and shape of map

You now have to choose carefully on what regions to own. You can only take 1 region for every 1.7 nobles you have. As for shape, not sure how many really care about the shape. People would rather take rich regions over a region that will make their realm look pretty on the map.

Anaris

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Re: Future Direction of the Game: Realm Size
« Reply #14: March 14, 2019, 03:38:23 PM »
I'd like to add a gentle reminder of the roadmap, specifically the forthcoming Hinterlands feature. This will add a new dichotomy for regions—Hinterland vs Fully Controlled—and allow for effectively unlimited expansion, with the core of the realm being the regions with lords and knights, and regions beyond that for any length of time reverting to (or originally being taken as) Hinterlands, which are faster to take, faster to lose, give few resources, but still fly your flag.

I'm strongly considering another small but significant change to go along with that: decreased travel times within your realm. That would mean that you could go to your borders fast, and only have to deal with full travel times once you're outside and traveling through unknown or hostile territory.
Timothy Collett

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