Author Topic: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes  (Read 841 times)

Andrew

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Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« on: May 04, 2017, 03:32:26 PM »
I think the title says it all really, but I'm looking to not only get ideas but also prioritize my time for what people think needs changed/added/whatever-ed the most.

So, please, give me your top ten needed changes for the games, with number 1 being the thing you think we need changed most.
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Demivar

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2017, 04:08:19 PM »
Bandwagon, away!


1: A new system for knight offers. When a new player joins the game, the first thing they should do is accept a KO. A good system for this would help massively, undisputed #1 priority in my mind. Getting players into the right realms and the right atmospheres under the right circumstances is the most important thing about keeping players for longer.

2: Fluff. Any ideas that you have for things that are fancy help M&F a lot. M&F thrives off sentiment and more flavour wherever possible is really helpful in every regard.

3: Any glitches/bugs you can find that can be fixed easily. When a player encounters a bug, the game is therefore, in their mind, a huge mess of bugs.

4: Expand the actions queue, add an alternate way to start battles from outside of interaction distance to allow those with less time to actually start fights and make zig-zagging mostly ineffective.

5: Changes to horses. In the Ascalon-Stonedland war, the war was fought to a white peace through the superiority of Ascalonian Heavy Cavalry against Rathgari Heavy Infantry. I won't dispute all of Weaver's changes to the stats, but the combat bonus from horses is now negligible compared to the stat bonuses from minor changes in other equipment.

6: Terrain. The map is porous and there are very few prominent geographical features. This is probably incredibly difficult to change without a lot of work, but I still consider it important.

7: Change how Javelins work. They don't work as intended, and rather than being a cheap tool for poorer realms, they've become a micro-intensive cannon for those with good organisation and lots of resources.

8: Troop training/experience changes. Experience is a good veterancy bonus for the few men that survive many campaigns. I don't think this needs to be changed, but there needs to be an alternate way for the retainers of rich people to be trained to a good standard without needing to go to war. All of my veterans and heavies (which were the same thing in many cases) were wiped out through the abuse of an old (now fixed) glitch, and I am personally greatly disadvantaged by having heavy cavalry with 0 experience, it's really annoying.

9: Some land just being, well, bad. The world shouldn't be equal in all regards, but if you saw how long the Totarian Kingdom remained 100% slumbered for, you'll see the issue. The land is so bad and unimportant that it isn't worth settling. New players don't want their 3 estates to be terrible (it doesn't take too long for players to realise that they could just leave and go somewhere else for free, better land), and existing players don't want the corruption from terrible land. They don't provide anything interesting, really. The way the map works means that they're strategically unimportant, and are simply tiles with different movement speeds, less resources and the one strategically interesting thing is that due to the lack of food they're a supply black hole.

10: Any macro/supply line changes. This includes all ideas for major overhauls to siege warfare, land warfare and the function of supply lines. There's ways to make this work really well in M&F in the long term, but it'd likely be the product of lots of cumulative work.


They're the individual points, but M&F thrives off flavour, sentiment and nice things. Anything to make things more personal/unique are great.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2017, 05:45:45 PM by Demivar »
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willy

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2017, 06:52:36 AM »

1. Player density. Not much you can code for more people...but maybe make being apart of King-Duke-Lord-Knight hierarchy more important/beneficial. This might be related to #7, kinda.


2. Messaging, publications, and guilds. I'd like publications to spread like gossip would (miles over time and linked to taverns). Messaging really just needs more tools to add/remove to and organize conversations. Guilds just are neat, I guess. I get that things are localized, but it needs something to make it feel like there is "a world' outside a dozen settlements.


3. Options for friendly combat. Tournaments, sparing, and melees. Tournaments would be a good place to make gold useful, maybe tie it in a bit with artifacts. A way for commanders (players) to test their ideas and low-risk method for troops to gain a little experience.


4. Bigger effects for combat experience.I'm not certain if these things already happen, but essentially: I want a mild experience advantage to be able to decide a battle (everything else even). I want a legendary naked axeman to be able to cut through a greenhorn sword/plate. This leads into:


5. Hard caps for experience depending on circumstances. Say, up to 20xp for training/tournaments, up to 50xp for brigand fighting and such. 100xp+ only attainable fighting in great battles of thousands. Separate the men from the boys more. Seems more realistic and more in line with "zero sum".


6. Army Engagements/Strategy. Would be neat if how an army engages partially determine how the battle ends. Attacking a traveling army, +10 points. Attacking a stationary army under a scouttower, -50 points. Maybe a "sneaky raid" option to burn an armies food/gear rather than just attacking them.


7. Capitals/emphasize consolidation. I don't wanna see a King/Duke without a proper castle. I also wanna see a cities become more interesting and important. Most towns don't need much flavor text, but maybe 'monuments' in capitals that work kinda like artifacts.


8. "Monuments" Yeah, I wanna see that. Something (for a god-awful amount of gold) to place a little history in an estate. Maybe just build it like a artifact attached to a town, or hide a text blurb somewhere in the history of the estate.


9. World Events. Would be nice to see something that makes everyone in the game react a little bit. A threat, or just a curiosity, that connects characters somehow.


10. Maybe artwork? If you could throw a "King of Dragon Pass" type backdrop on this entire game, I'd be impressed. Could also let me train a dinosaur as a war-mount.

Dorian

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2017, 06:12:43 PM »

Haven't given this much thought, but from the top of my head...

1. Improve the knight game.
This would take into consideration all the small things a knight would be able to do in periods of peace (which abound), starting from the knight offers. A new player should be able to browse through realm list first where more information on the selected realm would be visible. The geographical position of the realm, the number of players, the number of characters and the number of available knight offers. After accepting the knight offer, additional content should be available that is incorporated in the existing buildings. Expand the tavern rumor system, expand the inn with additional content, expand the libraries, temples and town halls with more and more content. Also, some form of NPC's should exist to kill off the slow times; brigands, bandits, or low fantasy creatures.


2. Improve the messaging system.
Since the games forte is interaction a more optimal, easier and customizable system needs to exist. This has been discussed hundreds of times in the past so I won't repeat what needs to be improved.


3. Pretty plenties please.
Anything that adds to the decoration of the game, not graphically too demanding of course. For example, allow the ruler to set his crest (provided he has one) as the banner of the realm he rules, or alternatively, offer players to choose their realms banners from the predefined pool. This change would include any small and easy on the coding stuff that would allow players to customize their parts of the worlds more. Adding settlement descriptions too, for example.


4. Enhance the battle system. This is already in the works if I got it right.


5. Make placing soldiers in their own customizable groups available (like mercenaries for example).


6. Lower the number of allowed characters for paying accounts, and in return, add other cool stuff to such accounts.



7. Introduce realm councils on top realm tiers, backed by working game mechanics. For example, a general should be able to see the rough number of soldiers without having to ask around.


8. Fix publications.


9. Shrink the world size.


10. Religion!
« Last Edit: May 05, 2017, 06:15:08 PM by Dorian »

Andre

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2017, 10:28:50 PM »
1. Better balance between resources and possibly more resources. With this, I dont mean that metal should be more plentily available, or that the west should get some metal or anything like that. I mean that metal, wood, goods and wealth should actually become useful. Currently, you can avoid any kind of demand of those goods, it doesnt affect you. If you need to build, just add more workers, it'll be done in a matter of days.


2. Trading. Make it easier and more important to trade, for example being able to start a trade route from outside a settlement, being able to trade between atleast your own domains when not in one of the settlements not traded between and so on. Also add more variety to trade, this ofcourse plays in a bit with the more resources part. But at the same time i'd also love to see distance of trading to matter for more than just cost of the trade, like making peasants more happy if their food is from the distant exotic isles for example, possibly increasing production.


3. More automation. Others have pointed out that it's frustrating when more active players have a big advantage in war because they can avoid a lot of battles easily. This should obviously not be the case, or atleast it shouldnt matter as much. For this id think the discussed mechanic of being able to send groups of soldiers out with a mortal leader would be a big problem solver. 


4. Entourage. Add more types and more things to do for them, for example the healers and medicine mentioned in another thread. Also make them more interactible, killable in battle and such for example. The sorting system also needs work, you should be able to sort camp followers out for example and then sort them with what they are carrying in mind.


5. Better sorting for troops and entourage in general. Battle groups like previously mentioned for example.


6. Gold. Just make it more useful. One idea is to add a bribery mechanic to get into fortified towns or speed up TOs. Possibly make entourage and soldiers far from their hometown cost gold, with reduced morale and possible desertation if not payed?


7. Dungeons. Just flesh them out a bit more. 


8. Artifacts. This goes hand in hand with dungeons a bit. Id love it if artifacts actually did something and could be found in dungeons. You should still be able to buy 1 artifact per account, but it should have a minor bonus compared to dungeon artifacts, like a low level artifact, with the main draw being personal flavor. This also goes hand in hand with equipment changes to FOs discussed on Discord.


9. Faster gameplay. I feel like a secondary world that is far smaller and has faster everything would do a lot of good for the game. Somewhat like the War Island on Battlemaster, just without resets possibly.


10. Just more players in any way possible. I believe 9 would also aid with this a bit. 




This list was rather haphazard. Ive been tired lately and I probably missed a lot of what I wanted to actually say previously, but I just wanted to get it out there for now. I might change it later.





Gustav Kuriga

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2017, 09:33:02 PM »
I like many of the points Andre made, especially points 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, and 9. I don't include 10 because I believe that if the previous numbers listed are done, then 10 itself will be solved.

Andre

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2017, 09:48:13 PM »
I like many of the points Andre made, especially points 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, and 9. I don't include 10 because I believe that if the previous numbers listed are done, then 10 itself will be solved.

I dont think 10 will quite automatically solve itself if the other points are finished. It might help with player retention. But you'd still need some advertisement and word of mouth and all that for more new players to appear.
Though I still listed it last specifically because without the other points I dont think getting more players will help much, and a lot of them will likely lose intrest, but if you saved getting more players for later you will retain more of those players which will give more value to it.


Also, i'll scoot 8, 9 and 10 down a bit to 9, 10 and 11 and add a new 8:


Guilds/Religions. Just official Guilds/Religions supported by gameplay mechanics atleast to the extent of giving an actual in-game page to it would be fantastic. Extra features for it I think can come later, except maybe guild wide messaging or something, but we definetly need something atleast.

Constantine

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2017, 01:33:23 AM »
1. More flavour for Characters
We can already make our individual characters meaningful and unique via descripions and roleplay but I believe the game could also help us out a bit. Adding character traits was the first step in that direction. I think we need to rework and improve the trait system. And add some other cool customization features like portraits/dolls (complicated route - contructor, easy route - upload images from the web, middle ground approach - upload images and let the game process them via some uniform template).

2. Flesh out the Houses
Better lineage tracker, meaningful blood-related features (family bank like in BM, more complicated and rigid inheritance system, better heraldry, etc.).

3. Consistent and better fleshed out mortals
Mortal soldiers system was my favourite feature back in the day. All mortals should be like that. There is no reason to not have scouts, heralds, even camp followers also be units with equipment and experience and killable in battle. Maybe even make all people in every settlement unique named units that can be mobilized as militia or kidnapped as thralls.
Another idea is to introduce additional complexity to mortal hierarchies and overall recruitment system. For example, take King of Dragon Pass model (loose interpretation). Every settlement has a small number of thanes, a larger number of carls, varying number of cottars and thralls. Thanes can be recruited as heavy troops and be a scarce resource. Carls will be medium troops - the backbone of every army and entourage members like prospectors or merchants. Cottars will be light troops, archers, scouts, camp followers. Thralls will only be good for slave labour naturally.

4. More flavour for settlements
Make settlements unique. At least to some extent. For example, expand the buildings list and make some buildings mutually exclusive (think Majesty or King of the Dragon Pass). Introduce limited number of building slots for settlements depending on their size. In a large village you shouldn't be able to build as much stuff as in small city. This way we will have people make meaningful choices as they build their demesnes up, not just build everything they can in every settlement and forget about it.

5. More geographical variety
Allow me to send you bck to my old idea: http://forum.mightandfealty.com/index.php/topic,3421.msg26419.html#msg26419
It needs a lot of additional thought put into it. But overall I think it is beneficial to introduce at least some sort of differences based on latitude, altitude, PoI features, etc.

6. Expanded equipent rules.
Rebalance and expand equipment. Weapons and armour being simply tiers of equipment steals a lot of cool complexity from the game. Spears should rock against cavalry, maces should be good against heavy armour, platemail should slow infantry down and all combinations should be sorta viable. Why are axes just the lowest damage swords? Why can't I have a functional army of axemen?
Maybe make some details dependent on locale. Introduce equipment available in certain biomes. Sabres in the steppes, highlands ponies in the hills.
Maybe introduce equipment quality? (I know, that's crazy).
In general, I think Mount&Blade has done it best when it comes to sandboxes with mass battles. Let's steal ideas from them.

7. Make the map feel smaller where it should.
The map is quite large and it is not necessarily bad. It makes sense that travelling eats up a lot of time. But the map should only feel huge on global scale. Individual provinces should not feel huge. You should not spend several IRL hours just to get into position of interacting with another party stationed in the same province as you but a few centimeters away. It all boils down to tiny interaction distance, I guess. Please enlarge it and allow people interact more easily once they are in the same province.

8. Better messaging system.
The current one is a disaster in my opinion. Even BM's system provides a more smooth communication on personal and realm levels. Not saying it should be easier to acquire contacts, but it should be easier to manage conversations with the existing ones.

9. Duels.
I want a mechanic that would allow personal combat between FOs. I'd be happy with something akin to what they have in BM but will welcome a more sophisticated approach.

10. Sandbox elements
Last but not least, in fact this suggestion is perhaps the most important one. M&F is a sandbox game which means it can only be successful if it can be played as a single player game (which often happens even now btw). It has to offer players stuff to do when no one else is around and introduce achievements that do not depend on other players. Improved dungeons, automated bandits, more interesting artefacts, anything that can prevent one from quitting when he's the last man active in his corner of the map.

« Last Edit: May 08, 2017, 01:43:21 AM by Constantine »

Andrew

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2017, 12:15:10 PM »
I'm going to start responding to all of this tomorrow, so if there's anything anyone else wants to add, by all means. I won't even require that you have ten ideas, just list any ideas you have in order of most wanted first.
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Constantine

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2017, 02:14:13 PM »
Holy crap! Another suggestion to expand on my #3.
Mortal units could not only have exp and equipment but also traits/skills/whatever
There is so much potential in that. Would it be cool if you had to tailor your equipment to suit your powerful units? Traits like sharpshooter or berserker come to mind. To balance it off everyone should have a beneficial and a debilitating trait. Something like that.

Andre

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #10 on: May 08, 2017, 04:10:58 PM »
While that sounds like a great idea, I don't think it's really urgent right now. Really all of your point 3 I feel like should come later in the game when more important matters have been dealt with. Except possibily having entourage be killable in battle and being able to contribute somehow there aswell. Possibly being able to capture enemy soldiers/entourage and then ransom them back to the other FO for a good sum of gold, or back to their families if you dont want the enemy lord to have them, but for less gold. Possibly also being able to enthrall those captured soldiers/entourage or execute them, or just set them free to do whatever they want. This should probably also come a bit later though.


In general I like your third point though, just doesn't feel like something we need right now.


Them all having experience and levels and such would be good for being able to for example recruit already experienced mortals into your army if some have ran away or been disbanded previously. And they should ofcourse prefer to use their previous weapons, or atleast be easier to train in those weapons once again.


And with traits and experience for all mortals you would actually have meaningful choices such as do I recruit this young fresh mortal, who may be weaker in strength than a bit older mortals, but would be easier to train and mold how you want? Or do you go for the older mortals who will be harder to train but just generally slightly tougher soldiers. You could also have the choice of recruiting someone never trained before or someone who has military experience, those with experience I imagine would naturally want to be payed more if that becomes a thing, and they might be even more difficult to mold how you want depending on how experienced they are. Possibly these mortals could start their own mercenary companies and the mercenary companies would have actual history and reason for being there, and they would actual come from somewhere other than thin air.


Though also, I think we should ofcourse try to make it into demographics rather than individual people listed on some page, atleast until they gain some experience. You could then have a young, young adult, adult, aged, old demographics or something. And then have stats for what amount of those have what traits and you could try and select for specific traits to be recruited. There should be some chance for other people without those traits to also be recruited I think. And you could also have amounts for what profession they are, though I think this could very well be the same as traits.


Then once the people have actually served as a soldier and gained some experience somewhere they would be listed in a separate list as actual individuals, same for people who might pick up tools or improvised weapons to defend their families during raids and actually do something there. Say people with above 10 experience would actually become individuals?




Sorry for the long post, but I think that point is rather intresting and just wanted to give my opinions on it.

Constantine

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #11 on: May 08, 2017, 04:27:37 PM »
Firstly, I like your idea of mortals ageing and potentially even dying of old age perhaps?
Secondly, I disagree with your point that big gameplay changes are not urgent. Do you think minor balance and gameplay tweaks will resurrect a declining game? I think we need exactly to start with fresh cool features to rekindle the player interest.

Andre

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #12 on: May 08, 2017, 04:57:43 PM »
I dont think small changes will resurrect the game. But if you read my list you can notice that a lot of it is new features that will balance out the game, some of them i'd say are rather big changes. And I don't think doing so much extra with mortals would be a bad idea right now because it wouldn't help or it wouldn't be good, I just think it's such a big feature that it would most likely require a lot of time, and its better that we get smaller and probably more important or equally important issues fixed before starting with such big changes.

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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #13 on: May 10, 2017, 03:10:37 PM »
Warning: This is going to be a very long post. I'm going to try to respond to most suggestions that have been made--that is, those that actually have something for me to respond to.

1: A new system for knight offers. When a new player joins the game, the first thing they should do is accept a KO. A good system for this would help massively, undisputed #1 priority in my mind. Getting players into the right realms and the right atmospheres under the right circumstances is the most important thing about keeping players for longer.
1. Improve the knight game.
This would take into consideration all the small things a knight would be able to do in periods of peace (which abound), starting from the knight offers. A new player should be able to browse through realm list first where more information on the selected realm would be visible. The geographical position of the realm, the number of players, the number of characters and the number of available knight offers. After accepting the knight offer, additional content should be available that is incorporated in the existing buildings. Expand the tavern rumor system, expand the inn with additional content, expand the libraries, temples and town halls with more and more content. Also, some form of NPC's should exist to kill off the slow times; brigands, bandits, or low fantasy creatures.

This has been on my TODO list for a while, but as De-Legro has pointed out on the Discord, it's not a small project, and would require reworking a lot of the logic. Before we get to this, at the minimum I'd like to see Realm Capitals and a Conversation Upgrade. Realm Capitals will gives players a central place to spawn characters in to realms that don't have knight offers. The Conversation Upgrade would add in system flags for messages and user meta ids, among other things, allowing both realms and the game as a whole to have game-level conversations (Important for new player help) and different types of realm conversations (like, for instance, stickied or locked conversations :) ).

I'd like very much to add more things for knights to do, I just needs ideas as to what.

2: Fluff. Any ideas that you have for things that are fancy help M&F a lot. M&F thrives off sentiment and more flavour wherever possible is really helpful in every regard.

Things on my "this would be so cool list": Warrens, Complexes, Guilds, Religions, 2D Battle, Frontierlands, Autonomous NPCs to fight on some other land, nobility systems, dynasties, dungeoneer gear. This list is not exhaustive and should not be considered a guarantee that such an item will be implemented.

3: Any glitches/bugs you can find that can be fixed easily. When a player encounters a bug, the game is therefore, in their mind, a huge mess of bugs.

I like squashing bugs and glitches. A lot of player retention is presentation, and that's easily ruined with glitchy updates. This is why I will maintain the test server, so we can thoroughly test things before implementing them, and ideally reduce the number of bugs that reach the live game.

4: Expand the actions queue, add an alternate way to start battles from outside of interaction distance to allow those with less time to actually start fights and make zig-zagging mostly ineffective.

An engage if in range option may be doable. That said, any changes to things like this will have to be very carefully controlled because they affect how the game is played on a very major level. As someone who plays only a few hours a day, I do fully understand why this is needed though.

5: Changes to horses. In the Ascalon-Stonedland war, the war was fought to a white peace through the superiority of Ascalonian Heavy Cavalry against Rathgari Heavy Infantry. I won't dispute all of Weaver's changes to the stats, but the combat bonus from horses is now negligible compared to the stat bonuses from minor changes in other equipment.

As far as any equipment options go, horses are still quite powerful options. That said, I would like to make cavalry far more interesting, such as adding chances for mounted combatants to potentially have their mount killed instead of themselves.

6: Terrain. The map is porous and there are very few prominent geographical features. This is probably incredibly difficult to change without a lot of work, but I still consider it important.

I will be playing with how the map's various things function, to figure out exactly how adding a cliff in the middle of a region will affect things for instance. But a map overhaul is on the TODO list, as allowing settlements to be more fluid can open up the knight game.

7: Change how Javelins work. They don't work as intended, and rather than being a cheap tool for poorer realms, they've become a micro-intensive cannon for those with good organisation and lots of resources.

Start a topic so we can all figure out where javelins should go. Javelins are overpowered though, as it stands now. It's already on my todo list to make it so archers don't get cumulative ranged power from both bow and javelin though (it's illogical).

8: Troop training/experience changes. Experience is a good veterancy bonus for the few men that survive many campaigns. I don't think this needs to be changed, but there needs to be an alternate way for the retainers of rich people to be trained to a good standard without needing to go to war. All of my veterans and heavies (which were the same thing in many cases) were wiped out through the abuse of an old (now fixed) glitch, and I am personally greatly disadvantaged by having heavy cavalry with 0 experience, it's really annoying.

Combat is the best teacher. Teachers can also be good teachers though. Allowing units to learn from other units, to a degree, makes sense. It's also likely that if we add in units teaching other units, that experience will also degrade over longer periods to simulate changes in tactics and strategies as a whole and such.

9: Some land just being, well, bad. The world shouldn't be equal in all regards, but if you saw how long the Totarian Kingdom remained 100% slumbered for, you'll see the issue. The land is so bad and unimportant that it isn't worth settling. New players don't want their 3 estates to be terrible (it doesn't take too long for players to realise that they could just leave and go somewhere else for free, better land), and existing players don't want the corruption from terrible land. They don't provide anything interesting, really. The way the map works means that they're strategically unimportant, and are simply tiles with different movement speeds, less resources and the one strategically interesting thing is that due to the lack of food they're a supply black hole.
1. Better balance between resources and possibly more resources. With this, I dont mean that metal should be more plentily available, or that the west should get some metal or anything like that. I mean that metal, wood, goods and wealth should actually become useful. Currently, you can avoid any kind of demand of those goods, it doesnt affect you. If you need to build, just add more workers, it'll be done in a matter of days.

It is really easy for me to add existing resources to regions. I'm not against adding some hills and metals in the NW of the map in order to balance things a little. Mind you, conflict thrives on imbalances, so it'll still be imbalanced, but lesser so.

I'd also like to add Stone and maybe other resources. Stone will probably be seeded into mountains and scrublands. If anyone has ideas for resources, by all means, let me know in another topic.

I also really want to make it MUCH harder to have a thriving plate clad army without any metal. The economy is a wreck because stuff can appear out of thin air. I'm not saying I'll disable that, but I want to make it so slow that you can very easily feel the difference when you get even a little in a trade. This goes for all resources and resource costs though, not just metal.

10: Any macro/supply line changes. This includes all ideas for major overhauls to siege warfare, land warfare and the function of supply lines. There's ways to make this work really well in M&F in the long term, but it'd likely be the product of lots of cumulative work.
6. Army Engagements/Strategy. Would be neat if how an army engages partially determine how the battle ends. Attacking a traveling army, +10 points. Attacking a stationary army under a scouttower, -50 points. Maybe a "sneaky raid" option to burn an armies food/gear rather than just attacking them.
4. Enhance the battle system. This is already in the works if I got it right.

Siege warfare will happen. Supply lines, we need to really figure out how we want them to work so we hit the sweet spot. I've got a vision for how combat should work and it's.... significantly less abstracted than it is now, taking into account unit positions and attack directions, theoretically even differing altitude.

1. Player density. Not much you can code for more people...but maybe make being apart of King-Duke-Lord-Knight hierarchy more important/beneficial. This might be related to #7, kinda.
10. Just more players in any way possible. I believe 9 would also aid with this a bit.

Fealty is in the game title. There is an ongoing Google Ad campaign or two that theoretically brings players in though :)

2. Messaging, publications, and guilds. I'd like publications to spread like gossip would (miles over time and linked to taverns). Messaging really just needs more tools to add/remove to and organize conversations. Guilds just are neat, I guess. I get that things are localized, but it needs something to make it feel like there is "a world' outside a dozen settlements.
2. Improve the messaging system.
Since the games forte is interaction a more optimal, easier and customizable system needs to exist. This has been discussed hundreds of times in the past so I won't repeat what needs to be improved.
8. Fix publications.
10. Religion!
Guilds/Religions. Just official Guilds/Religions supported by gameplay mechanics atleast to the extent of giving an actual in-game page to it would be fantastic. Extra features for it I think can come later, except maybe guild wide messaging or something, but we definetly need something atleast.

A lot of this requires updating the conversation system so that it's not strictly tied to just realms or just characters. I talk a bit about this above. In regards to publications though, yes, I'd like to finish and expand them. It kind of bugged me that Tom declared them failed before they were finished. Add a couple types, make them meaningful, actually tie them to buildings rather than characters and suddenly you can happen across a flyer from six years ago in some backwater inn about how the queen's mother got with the stable boy.

Religions and guilds and secret societies and associations and stuff are all on my todo list. Mercenary and Merchant companies are also included in that. And yes, I'd like to see mercenaries actually be created by other players, sort of like in CK2.

What all of these player associations will be able to do will vary by association, but I would like them to be meaningful.

3. Options for friendly combat. Tournaments, sparing, and melees. Tournaments would be a good place to make gold useful, maybe tie it in a bit with artifacts. A way for commanders (players) to test their ideas and low-risk method for troops to gain a little experience.
9. Duels.
I want a mechanic that would allow personal combat between FOs. I'd be happy with something akin to what they have in BM but will welcome a more sophisticated approach.

I want this too. Again, we need to figure out what exactly we want though. What I'd add may not be what someone else will ad.

Honestly, it wouldn't be hard to expand the existing combat system to allow two forces to just duke it out, with greatly reduced chance of death. But then again, tournaments and duels and stuff should probably be separate from, at least, the present combat system. It's too abstract for something that should be inherently detailed as it'll involve, probably exclusively, first ones.

4. Bigger effects for combat experience. I'm not certain if these things already happen, but essentially: I want a mild experience advantage to be able to decide a battle (everything else even). I want a legendary naked axeman to be able to cut through a greenhorn sword/plate. This leads into:

5. Hard caps for experience depending on circumstances. Say, up to 20xp for training/tournaments, up to 50xp for brigand fighting and such. 100xp+ only attainable fighting in great battles of thousands. Separate the men from the boys more. Seems more realistic and more in line with "zero sum".

Why would your soldiers be fighting in a tournament? You're a first one, you'd wreck them.

7. Capitals/emphasize consolidation. I don't wanna see a King/Duke without a proper castle. I also wanna see a cities become more interesting and important. Most towns don't need much flavor text, but maybe 'monuments' in capitals that work kinda like artifacts.

Under the present design, Imperial Seats of Power will require a number of other buildings to be present. I've not decided on the final list, but I'd like to get it to the point that actually building an imperial palace will require you to actually have trade deals setup to support all the requirements of building one. They won't be cheap. In fact, I think the only thing that might be costlier in the current concept is a citadel.

8. "Monuments" Yeah, I wanna see that. Something (for a god-awful amount of gold) to place a little history in an estate. Maybe just build it like a artifact attached to a town, or hide a text blurb somewhere in the history of the estate.
3. Pretty plenties please.
Anything that adds to the decoration of the game, not graphically too demanding of course. For example, allow the ruler to set his crest (provided he has one) as the banner of the realm he rules, or alternatively, offer players to choose their realms banners from the predefined pool. This change would include any small and easy on the coding stuff that would allow players to customize their parts of the worlds more. Adding settlement descriptions too, for example.
4. More flavour for settlements
Make settlements unique. At least to some extent. For example, expand the buildings list and make some buildings mutually exclusive (think Majesty or King of the Dragon Pass). Introduce limited number of building slots for settlements depending on their size. In a large village you shouldn't be able to build as much stuff as in small city. This way we will have people make meaningful choices as they build their demesnes up, not just build everything they can in every settlement and forget about it.

Already on the TODO list. Player dynasty houses will, hopefully, be the first part of a points of interest system that includes monuments, memorials, statues, ruins, maybe even cleared dungeons or tie-ins to complexes. Settlement Descriptions SHOULD be an easy addition. Player complexes will also add a LOT of options for players to describe their city (like, down to the individual building rooms really). I'm not against adding buildings that conflict with each other, but I'd need some ideas on things that make sense.

9. World Events. Would be nice to see something that makes everyone in the game react a little bit. A threat, or just a curiosity, that connects characters somehow.

Hm...

10. Maybe artwork? If you could throw a "King of Dragon Pass" type backdrop on this entire game, I'd be impressed. Could also let me train a dinosaur as a war-mount.

I'm not against incorporating artwork or even reimbursing players who can contribute artwork to spruce up certain things.

I'm also not against adding major in game events to the game's fiction, potentially with aforementioned artwork. ;)

5. Make placing soldiers in their own customizable groups available (like mercenaries for example).
5. Better sorting for troops and entourage in general. Battle groups like previously mentioned for example.

If I'm not mistaken, De-Legro is working on this specifically. Making groups more than just letters and actually giving them a meaning.

6. Lower the number of allowed characters for paying accounts, and in return, add other cool stuff to such accounts.

This may surprise you, but they used to be even higher.

7. Introduce realm councils on top realm tiers, backed by working game mechanics. For example, a general should be able to see the rough number of soldiers without having to ask around.

Introducing realm councils requires both an update to how positions are tracked as well as an upgrade to the message system. We also need to figure out what positions actually constitute part of the realm's "council".
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Re: Wanted: Your Top Ten Changes
« Reply #14 on: May 10, 2017, 03:11:10 PM »
9. Shrink the world size.

If anything, I'd be more likely to massively increase it (after I add mechanics to make regions automatically fall off realms if not maintained).

2. Trading. Make it easier and more important to trade, for example being able to start a trade route from outside a settlement, being able to trade between atleast your own domains when not in one of the settlements not traded between and so on. Also add more variety to trade, this ofcourse plays in a bit with the more resources part. But at the same time i'd also love to see distance of trading to matter for more than just cost of the trade, like making peasants more happy if their food is from the distant exotic isles for example, possibly increasing production.

I've got an entire topic about how I'd like to add in merchant companies and trade hubs.

3. More automation. Others have pointed out that it's frustrating when more active players have a big advantage in war because they can avoid a lot of battles easily. This should obviously not be the case, or atleast it shouldnt matter as much. For this id think the discussed mechanic of being able to send groups of soldiers out with a mortal leader would be a big problem solver. 

Initially I was against this, but now I'm thinking it makes sense in a limited capacity. Like, if you build a fort somewhere (yes, that'll be a thing), you should just have to assign a group of your soldiers there after visiting once and then be able to reinforce them from afar. Obviously this will require supply lines and siege-awareness to both be actualy things, but I'm certainly warming up to the concept. First Ones ARE supposed to be leaders.

4. Entourage. Add more types and more things to do for them, for example the healers and medicine mentioned in another thread. Also make them more interactible, killable in battle and such for example. The sorting system also needs work, you should be able to sort camp followers out for example and then sort them with what they are carrying in mind.

Hm...

6. Gold. Just make it more useful. One idea is to add a bribery mechanic to get into fortified towns or speed up TOs. Possibly make entourage and soldiers far from their hometown cost gold, with reduced morale and possible desertation if not payed?

Yes, the game definitely needs gold sinks. Paying your soldiers though seems like something that wouldn't be handled by First Ones, given how the economy is abstracted. I'm all for ideas on how people can spend their monies though! :D

7. Dungeons. Just flesh them out a bit more. 

Hai! (That means "Yep!", in this case)

8. Artifacts. This goes hand in hand with dungeons a bit. Id love it if artifacts actually did something and could be found in dungeons. You should still be able to buy 1 artifact per account, but it should have a minor bonus compared to dungeon artifacts, like a low level artifact, with the main draw being personal flavor. This also goes hand in hand with equipment changes to FOs discussed on Discord.

Making artifacts actual equipment is on my todo list, though I'm on the fence about how much effect I want them to have.

9. Faster gameplay. I feel like a secondary world that is far smaller and has faster everything would do a lot of good for the game. Somewhat like the War Island on Battlemaster, just without resets possibly.

This.... would be incredibly hard to do in M&F short of running a literal second instance of the game. That said, I do plan on having more to do locally.

1. More flavour for Characters
We can already make our individual characters meaningful and unique via descripions and roleplay but I believe the game could also help us out a bit. Adding character traits was the first step in that direction. I think we need to rework and improve the trait system. And add some other cool customization features like portraits/dolls (complicated route - contructor, easy route - upload images from the web, middle ground approach - upload images and let the game process them via some uniform template).

Adding images from the web is a problem because M&F is legally a commercial entity. That said, redirecting some of that income to purchasing assets or code or adding in open-sourced code that's licensed correctly is doable.

Personally, it always bothered me that First Ones are these beings that are all equal with each other. It's totally NOT how they're played by people. We all play OUR first one as unique.

Honestly, I wouldn't even be against adding in code that will trigger a mid-combat solo-battle between two first ones using a more complex battle algorithm, because I think it'd be cool and it's not a stretch. If you saw to beings that may well be demi-gods fighting, would YOU get in their way? I wouldn't.

2. Flesh out the Houses
Better lineage tracker, meaningful blood-related features (family bank like in BM, more complicated and rigid inheritance system, better heraldry, etc.).

Player houses (dynasties) and management of that dynasty are a feature that's already been worked on.

3. Consistent and better fleshed out mortals
Mortal soldiers system was my favourite feature back in the day. All mortals should be like that. There is no reason to not have scouts, heralds, even camp followers also be units with equipment and experience and killable in battle. Maybe even make all people in every settlement unique named units that can be mobilized as militia or kidnapped as thralls.
Another idea is to introduce additional complexity to mortal hierarchies and overall recruitment system. For example, take King of Dragon Pass model (loose interpretation). Every settlement has a small number of thanes, a larger number of carls, varying number of cottars and thralls. Thanes can be recruited as heavy troops and be a scarce resource. Carls will be medium troops - the backbone of every army and entourage members like prospectors or merchants. Cottars will be light troops, archers, scouts, camp followers. Thralls will only be good for slave labour naturally.

We're probably going to need a separate topic for this.

5. More geographical variety
Allow me to send you bck to my old idea: http://forum.mightandfealty.com/index.php/topic,3421.msg26419.html#msg26419
It needs a lot of additional thought put into it. But overall I think it is beneficial to introduce at least some sort of differences based on latitude, altitude, PoI features, etc.

This is doable, but would require a lot of additions to make it worthwhile. If anything, I'd probably apply such things on a subrealm level, and let players sort out the culture of their realm and have that apply to other things, rather than force the game to use historic conventions.

6. Expanded equipent rules.
Rebalance and expand equipment. Weapons and armour being simply tiers of equipment steals a lot of cool complexity from the game. Spears should rock against cavalry, maces should be good against heavy armour, platemail should slow infantry down and all combinations should be sorta viable. Why are axes just the lowest damage swords? Why can't I have a functional army of axemen?
Maybe make some details dependent on locale. Introduce equipment available in certain biomes. Sabres in the steppes, highlands ponies in the hills.
Maybe introduce equipment quality? (I know, that's crazy).
In general, I think Mount&Blade has done it best when it comes to sandboxes with mass battles. Let's steal ideas from them.

Already on the TODO list. Like, all of this. I've played M&B a ton. And a lot of other games that use this logic. I'm all for idea theft.

7. Make the map feel smaller where it should.
The map is quite large and it is not necessarily bad. It makes sense that travelling eats up a lot of time. But the map should only feel huge on global scale. Individual provinces should not feel huge. You should not spend several IRL hours just to get into position of interacting with another party stationed in the same province as you but a few centimeters away. It all boils down to tiny interaction distance, I guess. Please enlarge it and allow people interact more easily once they are in the same province.

Doable. Very easily doable actually. I'm moderately certain that all interaction distance is either a system setting or a declared variable on a single page.

8. Better messaging system.
The current one is a disaster in my opinion. Even BM's system provides a more smooth communication on personal and realm levels. Not saying it should be easier to acquire contacts, but it should be easier to manage conversations with the existing ones.

I'd like to finish it before I call it a disaster, because even if we move to something else, I'd probably continue using it for things like guilds or user conversations (like a newbie help). Hopefully, once it's finished, it won't be a disaster anymore! :)

10. Sandbox elements
Last but not least, in fact this suggestion is perhaps the most important one. M&F is a sandbox game which means it can only be successful if it can be played as a single player game (which often happens even now btw). It has to offer players stuff to do when no one else is around and introduce achievements that do not depend on other players. Improved dungeons, automated bandits, more interesting artefacts, anything that can prevent one from quitting when he's the last man active in his corner of the map.

Give me some fleshed out ideas. Lots of them.

Holy crap! Another suggestion to expand on my #3.
Mortal units could not only have exp and equipment but also traits/skills/whatever
There is so much potential in that. Would it be cool if you had to tailor your equipment to suit your powerful units? Traits like sharpshooter or berserker come to mind. To balance it off everyone should have a beneficial and a debilitating trait. Something like that.
While that sounds like a great idea, I don't think it's really urgent right now. Really all of your point 3 I feel like should come later in the game when more important matters have been dealt with. Except possibily having entourage be killable in battle and being able to contribute somehow there aswell. Possibly being able to capture enemy soldiers/entourage and then ransom them back to the other FO for a good sum of gold, or back to their families if you dont want the enemy lord to have them, but for less gold. Possibly also being able to enthrall those captured soldiers/entourage or execute them, or just set them free to do whatever they want. This should probably also come a bit later though.

In general I like your third point though, just doesn't feel like something we need right now.

Them all having experience and levels and such would be good for being able to for example recruit already experienced mortals into your army if some have ran away or been disbanded previously. And they should ofcourse prefer to use their previous weapons, or atleast be easier to train in those weapons once again.

And with traits and experience for all mortals you would actually have meaningful choices such as do I recruit this young fresh mortal, who may be weaker in strength than a bit older mortals, but would be easier to train and mold how you want? Or do you go for the older mortals who will be harder to train but just generally slightly tougher soldiers. You could also have the choice of recruiting someone never trained before or someone who has military experience, those with experience I imagine would naturally want to be payed more if that becomes a thing, and they might be even more difficult to mold how you want depending on how experienced they are. Possibly these mortals could start their own mercenary companies and the mercenary companies would have actual history and reason for being there, and they would actual come from somewhere other than thin air.

Though also, I think we should ofcourse try to make it into demographics rather than individual people listed on some page, atleast until they gain some experience. You could then have a young, young adult, adult, aged, old demographics or something. And then have stats for what amount of those have what traits and you could try and select for specific traits to be recruited. There should be some chance for other people without those traits to also be recruited I think. And you could also have amounts for what profession they are, though I think this could very well be the same as traits.

Then once the people have actually served as a soldier and gained some experience somewhere they would be listed in a separate list as actual individuals, same for people who might pick up tools or improvised weapons to defend their families during raids and actually do something there. Say people with above 10 experience would actually become individuals?

I'm mixed on this. It sounds cool, but I'm not sure we want to go into so much detail on a character that isn't playable. Combat styles could be a thing down the line perhaps, but I'm not sure I want to add so much micro to the soldier game. Having soldiers have a loose age though could be kind of cool. Traits though is where it gets dangerous, because then people really will start min-maxing the snot out of things, especially if the player can see what the traits are.

Firstly, I like your idea of mortals ageing and potentially even dying of old age perhaps?
Secondly, I disagree with your point that big gameplay changes are not urgent. Do you think minor balance and gameplay tweaks will resurrect a declining game? I think we need exactly to start with fresh cool features to rekindle the player interest.
I dont think small changes will resurrect the game. But if you read my list you can notice that a lot of it is new features that will balance out the game, some of them i'd say are rather big changes. And I don't think doing so much extra with mortals would be a bad idea right now because it wouldn't help or it wouldn't be good, I just think it's such a big feature that it would most likely require a lot of time, and its better that we get smaller and probably more important or equally important issues fixed before starting with such big changes.

All right, I'm tired of hearing people spread the rumor that the game is declining, so I'll share some numbers in hopes of finally dispelling that rumor.

The current status of the game? If anything, it's stabilized after a recent growth.

About 130 users that have characters have logged into the game this month (that's 10 days). I can't say how many of those are secondary accounts, but I can say that a fifth of those accounts are subscribers. If we expand that to include the last half of April, that's an additional 30 users.

The number of active accounts (those that have logged in recently, regardless of having characters or not) has remained stable for for roughly the last 5 months at just shy of 300 accounts. Prior to that there was a 2 month period of growth of the player-base from right around 200 to right around 300 accounts.

We're getting enough new players to replace those we're losing, and when people start seeing updates and fixes go live, I hope that even more will stick around, and who knows, maybe some old players will even come back.

Thus, the game is not declining. It's not flourishing, but it's not declining. So, please stop saying it's declining, spreading that rumor will only hurt the game.
Standing for the creation of interesting things since Year 1, Week 5, Day 4.
Favorite cold beverage: Strawberry Shake
My hobbies: Fixing computers, video games, anime, manga, some other stuff, sleep (in no particular order)