Guild Wars v0.2

Discussion in 'Guilds' started by neoncat, May 30, 2014.

  1. neoncat

    neoncat Feline Outline

    Okay everyone, thanks for all the feedback in the original thread. There are a lot of great ideas, so I had to pick and choose. (I had also begun work well before much of the discussion started taking place, which rather constrained what I could adapt in. I'm still looking at it though!)

    I hope to have the website and backend up by mid-June so we can do some short testing and see if folks like it. I'll try to make the framework flexible enough for adaptation to other rules in the future!

    Without further ado, here are the work-in-progress rules for Guild-Wars-as-I-am-building-it:

    == GUILD WARS RULES V0.2 ==

    1 Overview

    1.1 Introduction

    Guild Wars is a mashup of Diplomacy, World of Tanks' Clan Wars, and Card Hunter. The Guilds of Cardhuntria will fight for dominance, glory, and loot! (Well, not loot just yet.)

    Each Guild Master will need to coordinate a motley crew in order to bash, smash, and backstab their way to victory! The actions of all Guild Members in normal Card Hunter play will contribute to the overall war effort of the Guild, but each Guild Master must also send forth hand-picked Champions to conquer his foes. Meanwhile, the Guild Master will need to rely on Cartographers to confound attacking forces.

    To battle, forces of Cardhuntria!

    1.2 The Map

    Guild Wars takes place on an NxN world map. Grid units are considered to be connected only along edges (i.e., only along the cardinal directions) and NOT across vertices.

    Some grid units may be designated as impassible. Each passible grid unit contains a Card Hunter custom scenario and a Treasure (Ð) value ranging from 1Ð to 5Ð.

    The map is initially seeded with randomized encounters and resource values.

    1.3 Gameplay

    The Guild War takes place in a series of action cycles, each lasting 25 hours. The Guild War will last for a specified number of cycles, usually around 14 or 30.

    Designated players submit actions via custom maps played in Card Hunter during each cycle. All actions submitted by all players during a cycle are resolved simultaneously. (See "Player Roles" below for description of actions and conflicting order resolution.)

    1.4 Objectives

    When the specified number of cycles have been completed, Guild ranking is then determined by the number of grid units each Guild controls on the world map. The victor is crowned Supreme Guild of Cardhuntria, with all the rights and privileges pertaining thereto.

    An alternative scoring system under consideration would rank each Guild according to the quantity of resources it has extracted during the Guild War.

    (Completely speculative: If Blue Manchu would be open to a World of Tanks-style reward system, resources mined from terrain could be converted into chests at the end of play. I will presume that this is possible for the remainder of the rules, at a rate of ~4Ð per gold chest.)

    2. Economy

    2.1 Tribute (Þ)

    As a Guild's fame spreads throughout Cardhuntria, it earns Tribute which may be spent through various actions on the Guild Wars map.

    Tribute accumulated during an action cycle is not available until the next cycle begins. Tribute remains available in the Guild's treasury for 3 cycles.

    A Guild earns Tribute when a Guild Member is "active" by winning a MP or League match. The following are the means by which such activity earns Tribute during a single 25-hour cycle:

    - 10/8/6/4/4/2/2/1Þ... for the Nth active Guild Member
    NOTE: I may cap the above at the 10th active Guild Member so that SRC doesn't squash everyone...
    - 1Þ for each of 12 2-hour periods in which any Guild Member was active
    - 1Þ for the remaining 1-hour period
    - 2Þ for each of 5 5-hour periods in which any Guild Member was active

    2.2 Treasure (Ð)

    As a Guild controls more territory, it can exploit that land to accumulate Treasure.

    Each passable grid unit of the world map has a Treasure rating ranging from 1Ð to 5Ð. At the end of each cycle, this quantity of Treasure is deposited into the Guild's treasury if it has (1) constructed a Mine on the grid unit, and (2) the grid unit is connected by claimed terrain to the Guild's Headquarters.

    Assuming that this Treasure could be converted an in-game reward, it will play no other role under the present rules. (NOTE: For the test run, we'll see about using Treasure as Victory Points at a rate of 8Ð:1VP, with each claimed grid unit contributing another 1VP.) If such an assumption proves invalid, Treasure will be used to pay upkeep on controlled terrain and to purchase upgrades.

    3 Player Roles / Actions

    3.1 Guild Master

    The Guild Master holds ultimate authority over administrative actions. These include control over the treasury, to spawn Champions, and the ability to delegate certain powers. Furthermore, the Guild Master may not enter the world map as a Champion.

    The Guild Master may spawn a Champion via a trivial custom scenario whose title indicates the Guild Member that controls the Champion. The Champion will spawn at the Guild Headquarters at the start of the next action cycle IF the Guild Headquarters exists and is empty. The cost of a failed spawn will not be returned to the Guild Treasury.

    If multiple spawn orders are submitted, only the last will be processed. Spawn orders may also be cancelled via a trivial custom scenario. Spawn orders have lower priority than Champion movement.

    The Guild Master may (un-)designate a Scribe via a trivial custom scenario whose title indicates the Guild Member that will receive the powers. The Scribe (un-)designation takes effect immediately.

    3.2 Scribe

    The Guild Master may designate any number of guild members as Scribes, delegating to these players the power to submit treasury orders. (The Guild Master can always still submit treasury orders.)

    A Scribe or the Guild Master may submit a treasury order any number of times during each action cycle. Treasury orders are created at the Guild War website, and consist of an allocation of resources from the treasury to pay for upkeep costs and other purchases. The website will generate a unique id for the order which must then be confirmed via a trivial custom scenario.

    If multiple treasury orders are submitted, only the last submission will be processed.

    3.3 Champion

    The Guild Master may designate any number of guild members as Champions who enter the world map to battle on behalf of the guild.

    A Champion will most often attempt to move to an adjacent grid unit. This is achieved by winning the scenario associated with that grid unit. If the Champion loses the scenario associated with the grid unit, it is removed from the world map.

    A Champion can also provide support for another Champion attempting to move into or hold a contested grid unit. Support is indicated by a trivial custom scenario. If the grid unit is already occupied, or another unit attempts to enter at the same time, the outcome of movement will depend on which Champion has the most support. If the Champions each have equal support, movement will simply be cancelled. If one Champion is defeated by a superior force, it is disbanded and removed from the world map. (Diplomacy movement rules, except that displaced units are always disbanded.)

    Finally, instead of moving, a Champion may build improvements on the grid unit it presently occupies. See Terrain Improvements below for more details.

    If multiple orders are submitted, the first build or move order will take precedence. If only support orders were submitted, just the last submission will be processed.

    3.4 Cartographer

    Although this role is not officially recorded within the mechanics of the Guild War, each Guild will need to produce difficult maps which confound the enemy as it seeks to destroy the Guild's holdings.

    4 Expenses

    4.1 Terrain Improvements

    The Guild Champion may construct any one of the following improvements (build cost / upkeep):

    Headquarters (20Þ / 4Þ) - Enables the Guild to spawn Champions and to collect resources from Mines. Placed via defeating the custom scenario which is then attached to the grid unit.

    Fortress (10Þ / 1Þ) - Enables the Guild to shore up defenses by placing a more difficult challenge at a particular location. Placed via defeating the custom scenario which is then attached to the grid unit.

    Mine (10Þ / 2Þ) - Enables the Guild to extract resources from the grid unit at which it is located. Placed via a trivial custom scenario which is then attached to the grid unit.

    Claim (0Þ / XÞ) - A Guild Champion may claim a grid unit for the Guild by defeating for a second time the scenario attached to its current position. Guild Champions may move through terrain claimed by the Guild via a trivial custom scenario instead of defeating the related scenario again. (NOTE: A Guild may claim a fortress or mine constructed by a rival, if it can access and hold that position.) Remember that the Guild with the most claimed terrain at the end of the game wins!

    Upkeep is assessed at the END of each action cycle according to the last treasury order submitted by the Guild Master or a Scribe. Any terrain improvement whose upkeep is not paid (whether due to insufficient funds or failure to note in the order) will fall into disrepair at the start of the next action cycle and become neutral territory.

    4.2 Champions and Special Actions

    The Guild Master may spawn a new Champion for 10Þ with an upkeep of 2Þ. Any Champion whose expenses are not paid will be removed from the game at the start of the next action cycle.

    The Guild Master or a Scribe may purchase via treasury order any number of Resurrection Stones for 10Þ each. These are each assigned to a particular Champion upon purchase. If that Champion would be removed from the board at any point in the future, it will instead return to the last unoccupied location along its history of movement. That grid unit is NOT re-claimed if it has since fallen to another guild.

    At any point a Guild Champion may teleport back to the Guild Headquarters at a cost of 2Þ per grid unit along the manhattan distance from Headquarters. The cost for this action is assessed prior to the resolution of the Guild's treasury order. Teleportation is triggered via a trivial custom scenario.

    5 Special Rules for Single-Player Guilds

    A Single-Player Guild Master may also control a Champion.

    6 Opening Round and Placement

    The world map is seeded with random encounters and Treasure values. Four corner squares are designated as landing zones.

    Guilds competing in the Guild War will designate a Guild Champion who must complete a time-trial custom scenario during the 25 hours prior to the first action cycle. The first Guild Member who completes the custom scenario during the 25-hour period will be automaticallly recognized as the Champion.

    The Guild Masters will choose their respective landing zones during the first action cycle in the order determined by the speed with which their Champions completed the time trial. Guild Champions will be placed in the respective landing zones at the start of the second action cycle (and Tribute from the first action cycle will be deposited in the Guilds' treasuries).
    Sazanami likes this.
  2. Flaxative

    Flaxative Party Leader Staff Member

    Don't support the filthy louts. They're just knaves in guilds' skin.
  3. neoncat

    neoncat Feline Outline

    Not everyone has as many friends as you do, Flax. :p
  4. Flaxative

    Flaxative Party Leader Staff Member

    They'll never make them if they confine themselves in one-man guilds!
  5. Kalin

    Kalin Begat G'zok

    Note: I've never played Diplomacy or World of Tanks, so if I sound unusually ignorant ...

    Any particular reason why the money disappears after 3 days?

    I'd just like to point out that only two guilds have more than 6 members; only 6 guilds have more than 3.
    56% of guilds have only one member.
    43% of all guild members are Sorcererers.

    What exactly is a "Champion"? Is it a guild member or something controlled by a guild member? Can a guild member control more than one Champion?
    neoncat likes this.
  6. Flaxative

    Flaxative Party Leader Staff Member

    Please change these things :)
  7. Kalin

    Kalin Begat G'zok

    Funny you should mention that... I was just thinking of organizing a vote (one vote per guild) on whether or not to trust-bust guilds with more than 10 members. :D
    neoncat likes this.
  8. Vakaz

    Vakaz Guild Leader

    This might not be a bad system if there were tons of guilds and guild members, but as Kalin pointed out, our guilds aren't evenly distributed in terms of members. Are you intentionally designing the system so that large guilds have a big advantage over smaller ones?
    neoncat likes this.
  9. Flaxative

    Flaxative Party Leader Staff Member

    Er, excuse me?
    I think that you'd need to run that by the House of Population-Based Votes.
    neoncat likes this.
  10. Sazanami

    Sazanami Orc Soldier

    Well, where to start :p

    First of all, thanks for all the effort!
    Secondly, can I help out? F.e. help programming.

    Next is the criticism xD

    1) Gameplay in general
    As others have pointed out, CH guilds aren't exactly distributed evenly. I am aware that you would like to promote a better distribution, but I think you should try a different approach.
    The way it is now, the game will start out by having the larger guilds build a guild hall and spawn champions like crazy (playing a single MP game earns a player more tribute than his upkeep, so even if all Guild Members are Champions, having more Guild Members/Champions is actually a source of income. Note that inactive players can be disregarded completely, only occasionally earning a guild tribute.). After Sorcererers (who else :p) has swarmed the board, the 1-man guilds disregard the Sorcererers guild completely, as they have barely enough tribute to support a few mines (2 tribute for a champion, 4 tribute for a guild hall and 2 for every mine. With 13~14 tribute per evening they play), which is pretty much their only objective, as they will never get enough Claims to compete for Supreme Guild of Cardhuntria. They will only compete for the treasure and only if BM agrees to give them chests for it, because there would be no other incentive to camp a few mines for maximum treasure profit.

    An alternative way to play the game for one-man guilds is to disregard the mines and guild halls completely and just buy Resurrection Stones every cycle. With a Resurrection Stone every cycle, a Champion has no fear of losing his battles. He can just waltz into other people's territory and try to destroy everything they are trying to build. While an amusing thought, the definition of a player with the sole objective to destroy you, with no gain to his own, is grieving.

    What you want is a system that doesn't give more power to larger guilds, but more options. The system of tribute seems fine (Although I would suggest counting CH Guild Wars activity for tribute earned), but rather than have those guilds expand territory or earn treasure faster, allow them to use more interesting units in their custom maps, such as boss mobs, or something like that. Large guilds could have options such as designing treasure hunts or establishing trade or mercenary halls, that other players can make use of, earning them even more tribute.
    As a bonus, grant more and different titles to guilds, related to what they do for other players. There's a guild called Designers Den, which would probably much rather have a title related to designing maps. Perhaps they could offer their services in designing maps to other guilds? If there are multiple titles to shoot for, guilds will have more of an identity. Besides, it is much easier for BM to deal with any rewards, as it can be agreed beforehand just exactly how many chests will be handed out for winning certain titles. I think this will also give more incentive to form larger guilds for people with a common goal. If 5 different one-man guilds are going to compete for a designer's title, it would probably be better to join up and split the rewards. I don't see anyone joining up to try and beat the Sorcereerererers guild at being large and powerful anytime soon.

    2) One-man guilds
    As much as offering incentives to merge guilds into larger ones is good, I think we also have to face the fact that some people like to have a one-man guild.
    I propose to turn those individuals into Mercenaries. Soldiers for hire. They are likely more expensive to use than Champions, but they should have some other options available to them that make it worth them for them to participate in Guild Wars. Perhaps even a title reserved for 'one-man-armies'.
    Ideally, Mercenaries are hired through the mercenary halls mentioned earlier, allowing guilds to compete for a title such as the number one mediator in matching reliable mercenaries with well-paying guilds.

    3) Determining and spawning champions
    You mentioned that the first player to beat a certain map will be the champion placed in one of four corners of the map. Firstly, I think we should not have systems that are affected by the timezone players live in. Shouldn't the player with the fastest time be the first champion instead? (Or, alternatively, the player with the largest guild contribution.) In any case, it sounds like only 4 guilds can compete on any given map. Are you going to run multiple instances of the game, or will you limit the amount of guilds that may participate?

    4) Traitors
    If players forming large guilds is the goal, we should also expect players to switch sides. We should have rules for what happens to Champions that switch guilds.

    5) Treasure
    Assuming there will be agreement over using multiple titles and tying possible in-game rewards to those, Treasure will be only a measure of how well of a mining guild a particular guild is.
    I like the idea of using it as a currency, but then it should be distinct from tribute. Some random ideas:
    - Treasure could be player-bound, rather than guild-bound, and used for improving the individual player's army/armies instead.
    - Treasure is used to hire Mercenaries.
    - Treasure is the currency for player/guild interaction, while tribute is the currency for stuff that doesn't require interaction with other guilds.
    - Treasure is indeed just a measure of how well a guild does in hoarding, but treasure must be stored in vaults, that other players can raid. (Include a 'tomb-raider' or 'master-thief' title as a way to win the game?)

    6) Open-ended gameplay
    Instead of games lasting a number of cycles, we could make the game last indefinitely. If rewards are tied to titles (assuming it is even a system we use), award them at regular intervals (at the end of every month?). Titles are then, at any time, conveyed to those with the best score.
    If we do make the game last indefinitely, I do suggest running some test runs first, so disregard this point until we have more experience playing the actual game.

    Lastly, I know it's a lot of work, hence why I am offering my help implementing... stuff.
    neoncat likes this.
  11. Jade303

    Jade303 Thaumaturge

    So here is what I am seeing:
    -Having a battle take place for any in-game action allows you to use the API to record such actions. It seems like a lot of work on the individual's part; however I understand the benefit on the administrative end.
    -Gaining Tribute (P) by winning MP ranked/league battles is an interesting concept however it should not have an overwhelming effect on a guild's resources.
    -In particular, a guild with N players who aren't actively participating in the actual guild war (they only play MP) shouldn't have a large impact other than gaining Fame for their guild.
    Treasure: So each "claimed grid unit" supplies 1 VP (=8D) but each square on the map has a Treasure rating of 1-5D? I'm not sure I understand. More on that below.
    Scribe should have a title such as Master of Coin or Banker or Lord or something. A scribe is a rather lowly position after all!

    So my overall notes:
    As it has been mentioned, if a Guild Master can make any number of Champions then any guild with 6 or less members will probably be squashed rapidly. There should be measures to counteract this, and also I would like to consider a system that will give a serious 5-member guild a strong position.
    Mercenaries: A guild should be able to hire non-affiliated or non-guild members at a cost scaled to that player's Rank. There should be a minimum cost (~800 should suffice) but then if you want someone from the higher echelons you would have to pay 1500 and up. (again, this will require resources to scale upwards, which is better IMO, or for these ranks to be scaled downwards).

    In my mind, there are 3 scales to consider for the maps.
    Global (contains every guild)
    Territorial (wherein guilds fight a war for territory)
    Individual (A custom map tied to a grid unit/square.)
    So on the Global scale, the largest guilds hold the most sway (technically).
    However, when deploying forces to a territorial battle (a NXN grid) each side has an EQUAL chance at conquering that territory and reaping the rewards (EG chests).
    The winner of that territory gains a tithe that could contribute towards chests or gold, etc.
    Terrain improvements
    The custom maps should be fixed, pre-made, so that every Mine will be harder to defend whereas every Fortress would be harder to attack.
    -Rather than letting the guild members make the map! That would be very hard to control.
    Claiming is an interesting mechanic, however other than for the purpose of the API I don't see the point of fighting a custom scenario every time you go into a square, unless there are hordes and hordes of spiders or storges on some very important squares.
    Resurrection stones are OP. Being able to spend only 10P per stone, which revives the champion instantly is way too good!

    So if you have a 7X7 grid with only 3-5 Champions (Units) (since the guild master can't play), it would be nearly impossible to defend anything. That's why I suggest having Mob Squads (monster units/champions). It might be crazier but it might be fun.
    So as for the four corner squares, there are a lot more than 4 guilds. I don't suppose this means that only 4 guilds can participate? What is the plan here?

    I was also going to say, having a scenario for traitors and such would be great. Especially if that traitor could steal the guild's money and try to make a break for the other side!
    I have an idea for a scenario. In this scenario, the infiltrating player is trying to steal gold from another guild. Inside this building is a treasure room with a VP and also a Dragon or two, along with other forces stacked against the infiltrator. The game should be stacked so that the infiltrator should be wiped out after taking a VP or two (or three).
    The infiltrator gains a set % of the guilds money based on how many VP they take before getting driven back (when defeated, their spell takes effect allowing them to teleport outside instead of dying- inspired by LSL!). However, if they can wipe out the entire enemy force, that guild is destroyed instead!

    So again, to encapsulate my points:
    Have a MAXIMUM of champions/mercenaries per guild to participate in a Territory Guild War. (~5 each)
    Having a 7X7 grid, with 2-4 guilds each starting in a corner would be fair. (for example)
    Having premade custom maps for each square/grid unit. This applies to both conquering/claiming a square and terrain improvements like castles/keeps/mines.

    Having an open-ended World Map for every guild to go crazy in- sounds good. But I think that starting on a smaller scale with 2-4 guild armies of equal size would be a good starting point.
    Start small, because we ARE small.
    neoncat likes this.
  12. Kalin

    Kalin Begat G'zok

    Chancellor of the Exchequer

    If we use a hex grid for the world map we'll have enough corners for every guild with more than 3 members. And the other 26 guilds can be randomly assigned to all the inner hexes.
    neoncat likes this.
  13. Jade303

    Jade303 Thaumaturge

    OK so I would like to hear more from Neoncat about this whole thing... I really want Guild Wars to take off!

    Mainly I want to advocate for a world map VS territory war map. You don't want to go, hey, your guild is in this game we made up and if you don't play you are just going to get squashed by the closest- oh wait, too late, that guild stole your stuff and now they're dominating- oh wait, looks like they've killed everything that moves.
    neoncat likes this.
  14. Sazanami

    Sazanami Orc Soldier

    Just a quick question about the multiple layers of maps idea:
    Am I right to assume that we'd stick to the world map for most of the currently proposed game elements, but switch to a territory war map to fight the more epic encounters? For example, if two clashing champions are accompanied by a dozen groups of monsters, or if an impressive building is under siege.
    neoncat likes this.
  15. Jade303

    Jade303 Thaumaturge

    Oh boy. I don't think that any of us are on the same page. This is going to require drastic measures.
    neoncat likes this.
  16. Flaxative

    Flaxative Party Leader Staff Member

    This is what happens when you ask for feedback before implementing. :3
    neoncat likes this.
  17. Jade303

    Jade303 Thaumaturge

    OK so here is the world as I see it:
    World Map< Territory (Guild War) Map < PVP map
    All nested within each other.
    neoncat likes this.
  18. neoncat

    neoncat Feline Outline

    Sorry, just coming back online after a week offline. (Life, stuff, it happens. ^_^) I'll get to the comments as quickly as I can. (Now I see why Jon doesn't touch the forums much. :p)

    A quick comment about the guild-size thing:

    1) Yes, I realize that SRC is going to smash everyone with its huge size.
    2) There's nothing in the rules against smaller guilds making alliances against bigger guilds.
    3) If this ever gets to the point where there are prizes, there will be a downward pressure on guild size. Flax will never be able to win enough to give something to even a significant portion of the Sorcererers. I would hope that dissatisfied guild members might choose to jump ship and found/join guilds where they can take a larger share of the prize.
    4) I don't want to cater too much to 1-person guilds because the point of a guild is, well, to get multiple players together. Currently, the "guild system" is mostly "The Sorcererers Social Club", because there isn't any reason for it to be otherwise. Hopefully, we can find some creative ways to create downward pressure on guild size above a dozen or so... :p
    Flaxative likes this.
  19. neoncat

    neoncat Feline Outline

    No worries! They're mostly high-level inspiration, with a mechanic stolen (and tweaked) here or there.

    Completely arbitrary time limit. Tribute is supposed to reward guild activity in the game, kinda like a form of reputation. Thematically, your fame gradually fades away. Mechanically, a guild needs to maintain sufficient in-game activity to support playing in Guild Wars. (In WoT Clan Wars, you only have "action chips" for 24 hours.)

    Sorry, should have made that distinction clearer. I'll make it like so:

    Champion - Avatar on the guild wars map affiliated with a guild and controlled by a single player. No Guild Member may control more than one Champion.
  20. neoncat

    neoncat Feline Outline

    I think it'll all be ready in time, but thanks! Coordinating multiple developers is probably more than I want to commit to. (The pre-alpha test will be very low-fi.) :)

    The tribute costs can be tweaked for balance (I haven't actually thought too hard about them yet), but it was intentional that a single-player guild won't be able to compete against much larger guilds. They can still form alliances, demanding a share of prizes for their cooperation, etc.

    Hmm... that's a good point. I'll probably have to tweak Resurrection to prevent griefing. Maybe something like a rule that your Champions are all removed from the board if you lose your HQ, or something, so that the single-player can't just go wandering off without the protection of a neighboring guild. (In which case, it's perfectly fine to go try to mess up your opponent...)

    Unfortunately, due to API limitations I can't play any restrictions on custom maps other than that the player has to beat the map in order to place it. We can't do anything fancier (though I really want to) unless the API starts working on the live server.

    That's a great idea! However, rather than transferring titles, I'll probably make this work simply by letting Guild Masters and Scribes transfer funds to other guilds (for any reason whatsoever). It makes a perfect opportunity for an unregulated economy - "I'll sell you a map for N Tribute", and even backstabbing traitors... (I'll have to regulate it a little bit... maybe the Guild Master can limit the total allocations possible by a single Scribe...)

    I assume that the Guild Master will have sufficient control over his Guild such that only his hand-picked Champion will complete the time-trial. (Also, I don't want to give SRC 50 retries if their picked Champion does poorly the first time through.) Inter-Guild ranking based on the performance of each Guild Champion will depend solely about the time-trial results, and doesn't depend on time zone at all.

    Good point. More detailed thoughts and mechanics are welcome. It might just be as simple as that I reassign the Champion in its current location to the new Guild whenever its controlling player changes affiliation.

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