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Shard Design (Staff)

From Sanctuary Shard

Shard Design Topics for Discussion

There is always a lot going into the design of a shard, and almost all of it comes down to the lore. The lore both begins and ends the process as you attempt to incorporate a mixed bag of staff, player and scriptor goals. Usually, I just do this with one or two other people, but since this is likely the last shard we’ll ever do … I thought I might put it out there for discussion.

Please keep in mind that this process is not just about what we all would LIKE but what will and won’t WORK. For example, even if I have the desire to implement a system of magic like Ars Magica … it’s likely to require a scriptor to build it. On the other hand, there are a number of other already written magical systems available -- it rather behooves us to write fiction to take advantage of the scripts we can more quickly implement. This holds true for paperdoll art as there is a lot more fantasy clothing then their is historical.

So when making suggestions, please consider resources and limitations, because we will certainly have to.

Shard Plot Line

Finding, training and managing a seer team is probably the one thing that I have the hardest time with. So difficult in fact that I actually want to come at this singular problem from a completely different position.

For the last incarnation of Comraich on Second Life, Mith/Bane wrote a web-based game system known as RPCSS; Role Play Conquest Simulation System. While the game was still in beta, and there is more to be worked on -- it was an excellent tool for managing player driven land based conflict. Let’s break that down:

RPCSS is web based, its not in UO and will never be in UO because it requires functionality UO can’t reproduce no matter how creative David is.
Player Driven
The teams in RPCSS are written so as each leader of the team/house, doesn’t know what the other teams are doing. In this way, not only can player leaders (think guild leaders) actual manage the large scale combat, NPC armies can be given to players to control instead of putting them in the more limited hands of trained seers.
Land Base Conflict
One of the biggest challenges in playing out an online game is implementing any large scale conflict. Its hard to grasp, its hard to manage all the elements and hard to represent in UO. RPCSS at least handles the second part -- managing the elements of army conflict.

There are a number of ways in which we might implement the results of RPCSS into UO this is a quick brain dump of the ideas:

  • Armies spawn on the map in UO after the end of the weekly turn in RPCSS
  • Armies are only hostile to members of other non-allied houses.
  • Armies are triggered as champ spawns, and can not only be defeated by turns in RPCSS but by the players.
  • The type of warriors available in RPCSS could be increased from just infantry and knights to include archers, magics, warriors, knights, and boss mobs.
  • Guest Passes and/or disguises.
  • Disabling the aggression “in town” or better yet using the “guards” call to enable it, for events and what not -- needs more thinking.

To conclude, in addition to RPCSS being basically a player driven RISK game it was design for and functions as a tool for political RP in the spirit of Game of Thrones.

Land Based Teams

Okay, I had this all written out … all the ways NOT to do it … and the most obvious way to do it presented itself.

Teams will be based on the castles on the map. A team of players will be the leader and his council. I will write the lore for each castle and surrounding land to have a mix of races and alignments. Players can join any team without regard for race or alignment. Conflict will be based on the traditional manner of conflict; protection of home and resources, from which politics will arise.

Consequently, culture will be based on land region, and not specific to race as Sanctuary and Comraich were, but more like how Grimmwold was.

New Player Center and Applications

Info moved to Application

Culture and Race Design

Info now on the Races and Kingdoms pages.

Map Plan

We are investigating large "blank maps" with the intention of bringing over five towns; Briar Hollow, Ulster, Zanzibar, Hamelin and Ironhall.

Maps in reverse to check -- Once we hit an art break, then we are done.

  1. Comraich III only had Ironhall new, maybe some bit of the Jiazani town market center and one of the house compounds from the original Comaich 2 map??
  2. Small Grimmwold … the little map with itty towns for BH, Ulster, Hamelin was very cute … maybe we should grab the entire island for the starting town? The whole map would make a sweet starter town that isn’t part of the war.
  3. Grimmwold - Ulster, Hamelin, Briar Hollow, Patchwork Castle, Zanzibar
  4. Comaich - there are a variety of random towns that worked -- fallbridge, some of the valgard towns, and one or two of the dyrling towns. Fendahl and its castle?
  5. Sanctuary - I am seriously concerned that nothing in this will work for the artfiles.

Map (Staff)


Playing with ideas ...

A thousand worlds of might, magic and lore feed _____. From the greatest of their hearos and the smalles tof their common folk the guardians of ____ call forth the heros, sung and unsung to their distant planet in a stream of …

Half a decade past the world of _____ lay on the verge of finality, they lost the ability to call forth the heros, and the battle was near to eanding, and it its ending the fate of a thousand years was held.

There are three GREATER SOMETHINGS ... one for the Sky, probably Ancalagon the Black, something for the Earth and underworld, probably Jormungandr, and a Grey Protector ... something like Gandalf the grey to protect the starter island and explain why its not at war.

These three greater something have a mythic cradle, which is this world we are making, and that world has 5 kingdoms which the gods summon heros into. The heros lead the npcs armys in conflict with each other to see what gods will "win" and become the incumbunt gods for the "next age".

Then it starts all over again, this new one starting with us playing. We'll have 5 incumbent gods, but new gods available to enter and win.

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