Re: Two long-term problems

John Morrow (
Wed, 28 Sep 94 15:07:39 EDT

> o Noble/NP growth

See below

> o Uncapped civ levels

I think you have this one solved... :-)

>The 1-every-8 policy was chosen before I implemented resurrection.
>Can someone suggest a reasonable tapering policy for additional NP's?

The problem is that NP are used for several different functions (I
know this is obvious but I think it is being overlooked quite a bit):

o To FORM a noble
o To OATH a noble
o To learn special skills

If you rein in NP to stop the formation of more nobles, you will also
be limiting a players option to further OATH a noble or learn special
skills. I'm not sure this is a good thing since having existing
nobles increase in special skills and OATH ratings over time seems
natural. People are also not factoring in rescued nobles from what
I see (which, if they become a way around limits, will become a prime
piece of property).

I think the limit should be on the number of nobles you can control
and not on NP directly. If you rescue a noble beyond your ability
to control, they would simply thank you for rescuing them and leave
you with a gift. Likewise, players would not be able give nobles
to other players beyond their control limits and players could not
execute a FORM command beyond their control limits.

I'd suggest that you base the number of nobles controlled on the
highest title held by a faction noble:

Land Controlled Title Maximum Nobles
--------------- ----- --------------
0 noble 5
1-3 lord 6
4-7 knight 7
8-11 baron 8
12-15 count 9
16-19 earl 10
20-22 marquess 11
23+ duke 12
region king 15

The check would be made when a new noble is acquired so a player who
is currently above this limit or who winds up exceeding his or her
limit due to a drop in status would retain any excess nobles they
have. The idea here is that as a faction increases in power and
influence, it SHOULD be able to increase in the number of nobles it
has. And allowing one extra noble per every three land controlled
seems reasonable. Of course some mechanism would probably be needed
to stop alliances from passing off titles to get a higher limit,
perhaps a requirement that the title be held for a certain amount of
time (a year?) before you get a benefit from it.

Other options are possible if people don't want to emphisize land
ownership. They include:

o Making OATH level a function of how long a noble has served a faction.
o Making the "special skills" require rare books or components instead
of NP.
o Restrict the FORM command to the player's first five or six nobles,
requiring them to "rescue" any other nobles they get from monsters
and such.

Needless to say, though, I think the multiple uses for NP will make
any NP based reform (absent other reforms) problematic.

>This should be done in conjunction with giving new players who join at
>this point some additional gold and NP's to help them compete better with
>the oldsters. Perhaps also some extra peasants.

Unless you "fix" the resource management in safe havens (hint, hint),
you really should give new players some more peasants -- 12 to 20 --
since they can't recruit any more until they leave IC. 12 to 20
pikemen should keep you pretty safe if you opt for overland travel.

BTW, people should remember that players who have been playing for a
while will and *should* have advantages over those who are starting.
If the players' ability to advance is crippled TOO severely, people
will simply get bored and stop. Giving new players a fighting chance
is one thing. Crippling existing players to keep them on the level
of new players is another. I like (and have argued for) keeping
things challenging by making things tough for the players but I have
a differing opinion about making them impossible with hard limits,
especially tight ones.

John Morrow

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