Author Topic: Prison System  (Read 12976 times)

Foxglove

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #15 on: January 29, 2014, 12:07:20 AM »
Based on what's been described so far, I'd expect most people to execute the soldiers and maybe just hold the First One indefinitely to keep them out of action. I can't see the incentive to mess around travelling to ransom someone in exchange for them setting up trade deals that they'll likely cancel soon after. That will just screw up the stability of your own settlements once they cancel the deals.

There would be much more incentive to ransom a captive if you could gain something from the process that can't just be taken away again so easily. As the game is now, I can't see anything in there that fits that bill, though.

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De-Legro

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #16 on: January 29, 2014, 12:20:02 AM »
Based on what's been described so far, I'd expect most people to execute the soldiers and maybe just hold the First One indefinitely to keep them out of action. I can't see the incentive to mess around travelling to ransom someone in exchange for them setting up trade deals that they'll likely cancel soon after. That will just screw up the stability of your own settlements once they cancel the deals.

There would be much more incentive to ransom a captive if you could gain something from the process that can't just be taken away again so easily. As the game is now, I can't see anything in there that fits that bill, though.


You mean like forcing them to grant you the region entirely?


Having them assign troops to you would be good if they were high quality troops, so long as the revoke system was somehow tweaked so they didn't just recall them instantly. Tribute also would need to be set up so they can't just cancel it, unless we want to rely on player enforced honour systems for these things. Given that Tom is leaving up to the capturer to manually release you once the terms are met, thus relying on their honour likely we are expected to rely on the honour of the captive not to immediately cancel things.


If this is the case it is going to come down to a player group mentally. As a group are we going to always strive to optimise our individual situations, and thus 90% of terms will be cancelled ASAP. If that is the case then yes I would expect capture would equal either execution or being dragged around for as long as possible. If as a player group we decide to play the majority of our characters as honourable and thus we can reasonably expect terms to be kept, then the times they are not create a interesting point for further conflict. The rules of individual wars might be tailored to the expected behaviour of the realm/nobles you are fighting. Those with a history of keeping their terms of release might expect to be released faster and on good terms. Those who have a history of breaking their oath might find that they either can not secure release, or the ransom will be higher and involve things like region transfers that can not easily be undone.
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Foxglove

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #17 on: January 29, 2014, 12:55:36 AM »
You mean like forcing them to grant you the region entirely?

I can't see that working. A couple of reasons occur to me at first thought.

Firstly, it's not always much of an incentive to gain a settlement. There are limits to the numbers you can reasonably manage yourself in terms of the time sink that makes gaining lots of them a pain. Even if 'ransom settlements' were given away as gifts to other First Ones on your side, you also have to get everything into position to defend them first (we're not expecting a realm to just accept one of its characters giving away a settlement, are we?). Given the time it would all take to set up, it's not worth the effort unless its a major settlement. Then all the trade deals into the major settlement could be cancelled to crash it and turn it into a ruin anyway.

Secondly, using a settlement as ransom will depend hugely on location. Who wants a settlement deep in enemy territory that can't be defended? Who wants a border settlement that's likely to be taken anyway?

No, can't see settlements as ransom working out.

When dealing with any ransoms involving resources, there are similar problems. If it's a First One with a bad location, they might just not have anything much to give. Making them not even worth the effort of ransoming. Equally, if people have lots of interlocked trading deals set up inside their realms, it won't be too attractive to agree to resources ransom deals that cause you to need to reduce supply deals to other settlements in your own realm. That could cause chain reactions down the supply lines that crash some of your realm's bigger settlements (or even crash more of your own settlements). No, I can't see that working either.

This is just my take on it, but I feel the ransom would need to be something that's new and not currently in the game. Brainstorming what that could be would only be worthwhile if Tom thinks the current problems that have been raised with ransom have any validity.
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De-Legro

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #18 on: January 29, 2014, 01:48:09 AM »
I can't see that working. A couple of reasons occur to me at first thought.

Firstly, it's not always much of an incentive to gain a settlement. There are limits to the numbers you can reasonably manage yourself in terms of the time sink that makes gaining lots of them a pain. Even if 'ransom settlements' were given away as gifts to other First Ones on your side, you also have to get everything into position to defend them first (we're not expecting a realm to just accept one of its characters giving away a settlement, are we?). Given the time it would all take to set up, it's not worth the effort unless its a major settlement. Then all the trade deals into the major settlement could be cancelled to crash it and turn it into a ruin anyway.

Secondly, using a settlement as ransom will depend hugely on location. Who wants a settlement deep in enemy territory that can't be defended? Who wants a border settlement that's likely to be taken anyway?

No, can't see settlements as ransom working out.

When dealing with any ransoms involving resources, there are similar problems. If it's a First One with a bad location, they might just not have anything much to give. Making them not even worth the effort of ransoming. Equally, if people have lots of interlocked trading deals set up inside their realms, it won't be too attractive to agree to resources ransom deals that cause you to need to reduce supply deals to other settlements in your own realm. That could cause chain reactions down the supply lines that crash some of your realm's bigger settlements (or even crash more of your own settlements). No, I can't see that working either.

This is just my take on it, but I feel the ransom would need to be something that's new and not currently in the game. Brainstorming what that could be would only be worthwhile if Tom thinks the current problems that have been raised with ransom have any validity.


You forgot that the ransom of any resources would also be subject to trade distance losses. You raise valid points as to why such ransoms won't be applicable 100% of the time. That doesn't equate to them being worthless. For a start intra-realm wars are much more likely to make settlement deals both closer to home and less likely to require massive support to defend. Similarly limited scale border fights will have a greater chance of having suitable regions available for both resource trade and settlement swaps. The way supply chains work right now quickly forms a steady state that no one is willing to upset, especially if food is involved. It is the one part of Tom's flow system that really doesn't work for me so far and I see it being a hindrance in many interactions.


In terms of getting everyone in place to defend a settlement that is handed over, it is likely to be no less effort then what is required to mount a successful take over of a region, and in many cases would involve fewer losses then an assault against walls making it a consideration if we are already waging a war of conquest. If the conflict is not at that scale, then it wouldn't really make sense for a settlement to be part of any ransom agreement, it is simply too steep a price for being captured in a low scale conflict.


I doubt there is intended to be some sort of ransom option that is going to be 100% applicable at all times, it is going to be situational and some times there simply won't be a ransom that the character can offer their captive that they are interested in, and I think that is perfectly okay. We might also see ransoms revolving around less tangible agreements. Future favours, voting support, espionage and the like.
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Foxglove

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #19 on: January 29, 2014, 02:06:33 AM »
We'll have to see. I honestly just don't see any incentive to ransom at all as it's currently described. Only real play will show if it'll succeed, though. But I'm exceptionally doubtful about it.
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De-Legro

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #20 on: January 29, 2014, 02:46:16 AM »
Part of the problem is that for this game to work, part of the incentive has to be non-tangible. In my opinion if we are only going to take options that provide real in game incentives and advantages, then the game will lack anything but the most flimsy differences between realms and even characters, it will simply be a case of which out of x button options gives the best reward.


For ransoms my first thoughts are going to be what suits my character. Are they inclined to take the honourable option and grant ransoms or are they nasty individuals that delight in taunting their captives for as long as possible? Or perhaps my character is a bit of a greedy fools that will attempt to extract the maximum resource/settlement ransom without thought to the long term viability or consequences. What previous interactions between my character and the captured character exist that might influence the decision? Likewise what relationships between our respective hierarchies and the general atmosphere of the war influence the decision.


I would rather let my characters story determine the outcome rather then try and massage my characters story to fit the solution I as a player can see is optimal. I fully expect that playing in this way will result in losses at times that I could have possibly avoided, and no doubt I will be at a disadvantage vs players that choose a different style of play. Hopefully the story that arises will offset the disadvantages.
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Lionman

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #21 on: January 29, 2014, 04:57:32 AM »
I'll probably have to create a new thread for this but the whole notion of having our nobles 'cheap' is something I think is pretty unhealthy. To counter this I think our nobles need some kind of attribute they can accumulate or feature they can accentuate. In battlemaster we have honour and prestige, but im only using this as the loosest of examples. I dont want any attribute as dear as h/p to plague our characters in M&F. Perhaps our characters can accumulate 'ribbons' or 'wax seals' or whatever to signify that they've been involved in a particular activity? Think like fame in battlemaster but for individual characters.
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De-Legro

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #22 on: January 29, 2014, 05:10:48 AM »
I'll probably have to create a new thread for this but the whole notion of having our nobles 'cheap' is something I think is pretty unhealthy. To counter this I think our nobles need some kind of attribute they can accumulate or feature they can accentuate. In battlemaster we have honour and prestige, but im only using this as the loosest of examples. I dont want any attribute as dear as h/p to plague our characters in M&F. Perhaps our characters can accumulate 'ribbons' or 'wax seals' or whatever to signify that they've been involved in a particular activity? Think like fame in battlemaster but for individual characters.


I've been pondering this, as well as pondering if it is required. As a player group should this not already exist between us without a game mechanic enforced counter? Will not certain characters become infamous while others may only be well known within their realms. The biggest problem as always is player association where we as players recognise the player of a character and interact with them based on that relationship rather then a character to character relationship. The fact that surnames are not unique and that currently there is no way to determine which player is behind a character (unless they reveal it I guess) might go some way to reducing that.
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Finton

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #23 on: January 29, 2014, 07:35:23 AM »
Equally, if people have lots of interlocked trading deals set up inside their realms, it won't be too attractive to agree to resources ransom deals that cause you to need to reduce supply deals to other settlements in your own realm. That could cause chain reactions down the supply lines that crash some of your realm's bigger settlements (or even crash more of your own settlements). No, I can't see that working either.

It depends on the size of the tribute being demanded as ransom payment I would think. If my captor character told your captive character that he had to tribute 300 resources (100 being food) into a settlement that my guy wanted a quick mill or market built in. If he agreed, my captor would release him at the border after a couple of game weeks. The captor has no objection to disrupting your realm's trade to some extent but if he asks for too much then he's obviously not going to get it. On the captive's side, if he has more than one settlement, he has more freedom to pay up. If he's just a knight he may be far more worthwhile being sent to the Prisons Officers for holding until after the war. If your side wins, you demand any surviving prisoners back. If you lose, you have a chance to pay a ransom in a more orderly fashion.

In all honesty, I think you are pushing toward extremes. If a captor makes a demand that is too extreme, the captive will have no choice but to refuse and the captive has options to provide... motivation, I suppose. But if it lets a lord live or keeps one of your characters in the game (which is personally important to me at least) with some payment I can swallow then I will.

Another option is holding hostages to ensure the good behaviour of their relatives. My family and a handful of others conspired and initiated a rebellion in Alpha realm, which we lost. Key members of our primary family line were captured and held whether by our king or our duke depending on our position. Our family's could rebel again, but losing key characters with communications and reputations lost with them could send their family's interests back to the proverbial stone age.

What stops me from spawning a character in in the settlement where my family member is being held, getting everything I can from him and run like crazy for the border? Not something I'd even consider doing myself, but not something I want to feel victimized by either  ::)

Tom

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #24 on: January 29, 2014, 09:32:54 AM »
in exchange for them setting up trade deals that they'll likely cancel soon after.

Of course, but that is only one of infinite possibilities. You can also force them to assign their troops to you (instead of you killing them), or even grant you entire settlements. Or almost anything else you can think of.

Bubba

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #25 on: January 29, 2014, 12:46:16 PM »
In terms of execution, if we assume that the vast majority are going to suicide then it makes little difference if you kill them. Sure some people might point to you being a villain or some such but given that the character death is pretty much a given I doubt it would have many consequences. However if we don't assume that, then holding captives becomes rather powerful. If they are a simple knight, the realm is probably down a fighter, capture enough and hold them and you hamstring their ability to bring forces to battle quickly. If they control a region, or better yet regions you might even be in a position to deny the enemy the resources of that region for as long as you hold the captive (dependant on the permissions they have set up for the region obviously)

It will be rampant, precisely because your alternative describes so powerful a mechanic. All that advantage can be negated simply by committing suicide when captured. People will always find the path of least resistance around a difficulty.

In a Basic Account allowing ten characters, we really don't have the leisure of retaining a useless character slot while he's imprisoned. Nobles fall into a variety of purposes. Some are dedicated governors of towns, others are diplomats wandering abroad, some are involved in the logistics of moving men from towns to the main army. A few even actually fight. In a well-run barony of several lands, maybe three nobles are actually the army captains.

If those three captains are captured, then I still have to confront my maximum character limit of ten. I now effectively run an account that has only seven active characters. And I need to do the work of ten.


A.
I could take nobles off the infrastructure that supplies the armies and promote them to the army... but then governors must leave their towns to haul their own produce to the army. Unguarded towns are dangerous in a war.


B.
Alternatively, I can kill the captured generals and replace them with new characters that spawn helpfully at my towns where my militia troops already are stationed. Immediately, they already command a back-up army! I have ten active characters with an unbroken infrastructure and well-guarded towns. My reserve character pool is drained of three, but that loss will be made good in three days because noble reserves replenish quickly.

I make an RP about my honourable generals committing honourable seppuku in a most honourable fashion because they can't live with the shame of their defeat. I get on with the organisation of a second army.


A or B. Which do you choose? The faster you choose option B, the quicker the reserve character pool can begin filling back up.


I'll probably have to create a new thread for this but the whole notion of having our nobles 'cheap' is something I think is pretty unhealthy. To counter this I think our nobles need some kind of attribute they can accumulate or feature they can accentuate. In battlemaster we have honour and prestige, but im only using this as the loosest of examples. I dont want any attribute as dear as h/p to plague our characters in M&F. Perhaps our characters can accumulate 'ribbons' or 'wax seals' or whatever to signify that they've been involved in a particular activity? Think like fame in battlemaster but for individual characters.

I'm just describing reality here. Reality is, by definition, unhealthy because it kills all of us sooner or later.

Nobles are cheap and replaceable. That is the fact. They spawn fast. They are interchangeable and identical in potential. RP is infinitely flexible and adaptable to actual player needs. Cold hard advantage will win, but some will mask it with flowery RP better than others. Expect many allusions to Bushido in various RPs.

What would change the perceived cheapness? Not disadvantageous player codes of honour, nor even useless ribbons. Real skills that actually matter game-wise. Each month, every character gets a point that can be spent on character improvements. Faster, better, stronger. Now people will care about keeping each character alive as long as possible.

Else, lengthen the replenishment time. If I get a new noble every day, I need to keep each of my present ones alive for 24 hours before he can safely be replaced. Anyone can do that. But if I get one character a week, I now must calculate whether the loss of characters will be faster than replenishment.







Foxglove

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #26 on: January 29, 2014, 02:05:12 PM »
What would change the perceived cheapness? Not disadvantageous player codes of honour, nor even useless ribbons. Real skills that actually matter game-wise. Each month, every character gets a point that can be spent on character improvements. Faster, better, stronger. Now people will care about keeping each character alive as long as possible.

This is a great idea for so many reasons: giving more definition to different characters; making it more valuable to pay ransoms for an experienced character; giving an added reason for the death of a character to be treated as meaningful; and so forth. I suggest opening a new thread so the idea can be discussed more fully.
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Tom

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #27 on: January 29, 2014, 04:48:56 PM »
It's not a new idea. It just hasn't been important before.

Valast

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #28 on: January 29, 2014, 04:52:35 PM »
The problem is our perception of strategic advantage.  We will always have someone who just wants to kill as many nobles as possible...just for fun.  So it becomes an issue of enough strategic advantage is given for 1. the captive to remain alive and 2. the captor to keep them alive...

In other words... death should be important from a strat gamers perspective as well as from an RP one.  But as in the real world...some people will be more important than others.  I mean if a young single village noble is captured he is not worth much ransom to anyone...but a noble head of house who has some well established communication lines and a big army?

Currently death wipes out contacts (which increase with your importance), dismisses your army, caused havoc with your villages (depending on successors).

RP it is a hard end to the living story of your character.

So what else can be added as a con to a characters death to make it more worth wile to negotiate when captured vs just killing your character?

1. disable self killing while captured.
2. add a perk to long lived, well established, wealthiest... characters.  (expert bonus to food production or military recruitment...while the noble is IN the village)
3. Allow ransom to be payed instantly... by this I mean make it so that the captured noble can negotiate a trade deal with the captor at any point of captivity.  Then the captive is let loose they CAN go and end the tribute BUT they will be forced to travel to each village to end it.  It gives a quick boost to the captor's villages for how ever long it takes the other noble to go cancel it. (I mentioned this one before but still seems interesting)
4. ??? ?

De-Legro

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Re: Prison System
« Reply #29 on: January 30, 2014, 12:27:10 AM »
It will be rampant, precisely because your alternative describes so powerful a mechanic. All that advantage can be negated simply by committing suicide when captured. People will always find the path of least resistance around a difficulty.

In a Basic Account allowing ten characters, we really don't have the leisure of retaining a useless character slot while he's imprisoned. Nobles fall into a variety of purposes. Some are dedicated governors of towns, others are diplomats wandering abroad, some are involved in the logistics of moving men from towns to the main army. A few even actually fight. In a well-run barony of several lands, maybe three nobles are actually the army captains.

If those three captains are captured, then I still have to confront my maximum character limit of ten. I now effectively run an account that has only seven active characters. And I need to do the work of ten.


A.
I could take nobles off the infrastructure that supplies the armies and promote them to the army... but then governors must leave their towns to haul their own produce to the army. Unguarded towns are dangerous in a war.


B.
Alternatively, I can kill the captured generals and replace them with new characters that spawn helpfully at my towns where my militia troops already are stationed. Immediately, they already command a back-up army! I have ten active characters with an unbroken infrastructure and well-guarded towns. My reserve character pool is drained of three, but that loss will be made good in three days because noble reserves replenish quickly.

I make an RP about my honourable generals committing honourable seppuku in a most honourable fashion because they can't live with the shame of their defeat. I get on with the organisation of a second army.


A or B. Which do you choose? The faster you choose option B, the quicker the reserve character pool can begin filling back up.


I'm just describing reality here. Reality is, by definition, unhealthy because it kills all of us sooner or later.

Nobles are cheap and replaceable. That is the fact. They spawn fast. They are interchangeable and identical in potential. RP is infinitely flexible and adaptable to actual player needs. Cold hard advantage will win, but some will mask it with flowery RP better than others. Expect many allusions to Bushido in various RPs.

What would change the perceived cheapness? Not disadvantageous player codes of honour, nor even useless ribbons. Real skills that actually matter game-wise. Each month, every character gets a point that can be spent on character improvements. Faster, better, stronger. Now people will care about keeping each character alive as long as possible.

Else, lengthen the replenishment time. If I get a new noble every day, I need to keep each of my present ones alive for 24 hours before he can safely be replaced. Anyone can do that. But if I get one character a week, I now must calculate whether the loss of characters will be faster than replenishment.


Indeed, it is going to come down to the player base frame of mind in general. You could well be correct that the majority of players will consider nobles cheap and want only to negative the supposed disadvantage of being captured. I don't know the players of the guided start anywhere near well enough to say anything there.


I don't argue against the idea that players will act to preserve their vested interest, nor that they will take the path of least resistance. However the details that comprise those paths will change from player to player. It is not nearly as important to me to get a character back into the battle as it is to play the characters to their personality. Nor am I inclined to create a culture where suicide after capture is "honourable" just to avoid a game mechanic.


So in the end weather the current system is manageable or will be rampantly abused is going to depend entirely on the kind of players we attract to the game and what their aims are.


Also whomever thinks it is amusing to vote Bastur and I down simply because we are having a disagreement what is the point? I is not like we are being abuse to each other, we simply have different points of view based on the fact we intend to play this game for differing entertainment purposes.
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