Need more players, not less guilds

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Alteor
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Need more players, not less guilds

Post by Alteor » 10 Feb 2020 20:50

Saw some ongoing talk about guild vs players amounts on another thread, and decided to "split" that talk by creating this thread here.

Long story short, some people want to merge or remove guilds, others want other solutions.

I think we just need more players, the current guilds are basically fine. Even the "useless" ones are not useless as people think.

Although this might upset some players, I will talk a little about Shadow Union.

1. I joined Genesis only because they exist, I never joined them, never made an elven character... but I visited their base a couple times, talked to them, whatnot.

2. They are not just for combat and RP, they know a lot of secrets about certain areas of Genesis (and secret I mean it, only inside the guild some information is passed on, it is not written anywhere on the game except on the source code), they have some control over parts of the grid, and they help encourage RP in Sybaris and Terel even when they are not too active.

3. During a certain RP incident some time ago, that even led to a quasi-guild war (there was no declared war but multiple guilds started to attack on sight players of opposing guilds), eventually I found out good part of the reason it happened was SU players manipulating things behing the scenes and making things move.

Or about Calians:

1. Their wars with other guilds affected the grid, for example did you know you can get resistance to dragon attacks if you drink from the fountain in Calia? The reason for that was that Dragonarmies found a too effective way to siege calia, shutting down the grid there for good, and admins had to introduce a secret countermeasure. That is just one example of how guilds interaction affected the game outside the guilds.

2. Although Calians are not that active as they were in the past... you knew they are responsible for the Cadets guild? After I joined Calians, I learned sometimes experienced Calians are instructed to go help the cadets, teach them, or leave gear on their racks, I remember when I was a newbie and there was mysteriously lots of good gear on the racks, eventually I learned Calians after farming their own gear (Calians were obessed with that!) they would put a bunch of it on the Cadets rack too.

The list goes on... lots of guilds can interact heavily with the grid, lots of areas have secrets that only guilds there can do something about it, Middle-Earth for example has tons of them, including several guilds there and make NPCs attack, or refrain from attacking, certain players.

Palanthas also interact with guilds, for example a tavern that has a special seat only for certain guilds, secret areas, NPCs that react differently or do different things...

Merging guilds would literally, break the world, make several maps stop working right, many guilds, specially older ones, are very integrated with the game beyond the classic "commands, emotes, etc..."

What the game needs, is more players, so that the current guilds can be alive again, this is not just a matter of game balance, the very life of the maps, depends on it.

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Dhez
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by Dhez » 12 Feb 2020 08:24

*fewer guilds
You see a mousetrap. I see free cheese and a challenge.
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

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Cherek
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by Cherek » 13 Feb 2020 04:27

Those are all good arguments Alteor, and we can probably make similar arguments for almost all guilds. Closing any guild is likely to cause a number of unhappy players, no doubt about it. I should also again stress that we do NOT have any immediate plans to close ANY guild. I believe I made a lot of players very nervous by just blurting out this idea out here in public. This is what I always did in the past, but as Keeper I should probably be a bit more careful. This was not mentioned in the Keeper 101 book I borrowed from Gorboth... but perhaps it's common sense? Sadly, I only have adventurer level skill in common sense.

Now, I should of course have considered how you would feel seeing the words "closing" and "<my guild name>" in the same sentence. I apologize for that. So, please, continue playing in your guild and do no worry about closures for now. It is merely a thought, one of hundreds.

I do want to find a way to increase the sense of community, conflicts, and roleplay in Genesis, and guilds are a big part of that. There are many possible solutions, though, closing or transforming guilds _could_ be one of them, but it does not have to be.

Anfalas
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by Anfalas » 13 Feb 2020 05:53

Cherek, I like how you're throwing ideas out there. It's nice to know what wizards are thinking, more importantly what the admin are thinking. Having been around long enough I know that these are just ideas. My experience has lead to understand that vast majority of these sorts of ideas are ever acted upon. And of the ones that actually are acted upon? Vast majority of those few even see the light of day.

To those that have not been around as long as others, realize that ideas thrown out here rarely see the light of day. So until someone from the admin says "x" is happening, don't panic. And even when they say "X" is happening, it's usually by Christmas (some year, maybe 10 years down the road). Look at recoding guilds, yes, some have been done recently, but one of the oldest guilds still has not been (sorry Rangers :( ).

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Cherek
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by Cherek » 13 Feb 2020 23:17

A wizard saying something WILL happen before a specific date is perhaps the most certain sign that it's NOT happening :)

Alteor
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by Alteor » 14 Feb 2020 16:27

No need to worry Cherek :)

I didn't panicked or anything, I wrote the post just to point out closing guilds is not really a viable solution for the excessive amount of guilds, because how tight they are with the maps code and community.

I am just well... "hinting", only way forward on this issue is somehow (dunno how) increase players.

sylphan
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by sylphan » 14 Feb 2020 23:45

I'm glad you made that thought public, Cherek. I'm grateful for the opportunity to say immediately that I think that is totally the wrong direction, and for the chance that others will agree and give you clear, direct feedback on it.

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Vyasa
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by Vyasa » 16 Feb 2020 12:46

While the idea of having more players to fill out the existing guilds is indeed attractive, I think some guilds can be categorized as unsuccessful. It all depends on the Keeper's vision for the game. Do we want to create a grinders' paradise, do we want to feel as part of the world and be motivated to interact, or do we want to inspire conflicts?

We have too many neutral options and players seeking them to avoid taking a side in any conflict unless it suits their particular interests. Neutrality can make sense, but I think that the term has been misused and the arguments have been stretched to fit interests of a different nature.

I can think of three options which should allow for neutrality: monks, red robed wizards, and mercenaries. The first have the penalty of being a very defensive, detached from the world, and peaceful guild. You more or less take a vow of restraining from the wars of the world to focus on something else. Similarly to them, the red robes have penalties for their neutrality and ways to enforce it (although they could be stricter). Lastly, the mercenaries are, well... A different approach to neutrality which was designed as such to allow for someone to succeed in a guild without going through the hassles of councils and human nature. They're an example of automation.

Now, as for what can be called successful or unsuccessful guilds... I think some of them simply do not have a place in Genesis today if they want to keep the idea through which they were created. They might have history, and we might be nostalgic about them if they were gone, but it's the same we've had to endure when Mystics, Vampires, Khiira, Necromancers, and other guilds were closed. The quality of some of those guilds sometimes surpassing any existing ones today.

Realistically speaking, even if we did get an influx of players at this point in time, it wouldn't be enough to maintain the amount of guilds we currently have or create any sort of interaction between them.

Genesis should be about choices, and those choices mattering. There shouldn't be a way to have it all and be your own god. You can be evil, and suffer the consequences which come with that power. You could be good, while shouldering the burden of righteousness along with its rewards, or you could be neutral, which would give you freedom to pursue your own goals at the cost of being less powerful than picking a side. With great powers come great responsibility. If you want to avoid responsibility, then you also forsake that level of power.
Curving back within myself I create again and again.

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Dhez
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by Dhez » 16 Feb 2020 12:58

Alteor wrote:
10 Feb 2020 20:50
Saw some ongoing talk about guild vs players amounts on another thread, and decided to "split" that talk by creating this thread here.

Long story short, some people want to merge or remove guilds, others want other solutions.

I think we just need more players, the current guilds are basically fine. Even the "useless" ones are not useless as people think.

Although this might upset some players, I will talk a little about Shadow Union.

2. They are not just for combat and RP, they know a lot of secrets about certain areas of Genesis (and secret I mean it, only inside the guild some information is passed on, it is not written anywhere on the game except on the source code), they have some control over parts of the grid, and they help encourage RP in Sybaris and Terel even when they are not too active.
Those secret areas are available to anyone and not in the slightest restricted to members of the shadow union. They just make it a point for a member to find and learn them because it's part of what defines their members. It's their home, and they should know it better than anyone else. However, the Union is but a small part of Avenir, regardless of how well integrated it is into the domain. Krynn also interacts with knights, but that doesn't mean that Krynn dies without the knighthood.

If you listen closely to Maivia and its forces, you'll see that it's been part of the plan for a long time that they attack the Union as they once did the Mystics. At the very least the attacks from the ogres should be restored. Removing drawbacks from guilds because they're not active enough isn't fair to other guilds which still have to deal with their drawbacks regardless of their activity.

Alteor wrote:
10 Feb 2020 20:50
3. During a certain RP incident some time ago, that even led to a quasi-guild war (there was no declared war but multiple guilds started to attack on sight players of opposing guilds), eventually I found out good part of the reason it happened was SU players manipulating things behing the scenes and making things move.
This has nothing to do with the Shadow Union as a guild and all to do with individuals which for all its worth, according to your description, would be acting in a very contrary manner to what the guild should be about.
You see a mousetrap. I see free cheese and a challenge.
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

sylphan
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Re: Need more players, not less guilds

Post by sylphan » 16 Feb 2020 18:19

Vyasa wrote:
16 Feb 2020 12:46
We have too many neutral options and players seeking them to avoid taking a side in any conflict unless it suits their particular interests. ...

I can think of three options which should allow for neutrality: monks, red robed wizards, and mercenaries. The first have the penalty of being a very defensive, detached from the world, and peaceful guild. You more or less take a vow of restraining from the wars of the world to focus on something else.
On your first point about neutrality: Is your view that we have "too many neutral options" based on any analysis of what makes other MUDs successful, or what has made Genesis successful at certain points in its history? It seems like you want someone to create a character, finish the tutorial, and then immediately be thrown into a conflict. I understand the importance of conflict, but I also think there is a lot of room for different kinds of conflict (though it might be more productive to focus on "engagement"), and for even MORE neutral guilds. The SU is neutral, but not "safe," not "bland," and certainly (from an outsider's view, anyway) very immersive. And the monks, for all their neutrality, have had a couple of really active periods since their inception. Do you think the less active periods are a result of "neutrality," and if so, why do you think so?

On your view of the monks: You're not wrong that they value self-discipline and peace. On the other hand, how "detached from the world" are they? Grampal (yes, I'm aware he no longer seems to be playing) was one of the most well-known figures in all of Genesis history. Goldbezie is less of an icon, but she is frequently in touch with people and especially newbies, helping them find their ways. When Elderan was a monk, he was far from "detached from the world." Are there more reclusive monks? Absolutely. Does the guild itself funnel people into a reclusive role any more than some others? I would argue that is very far from the case.

I'd like to hear others' views on neutrality, because this particular take seems pretty far from the central causes of the decline we've seen since the PC gamer boost.

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