Author Topic: Allanaki City Elves  (Read 40450 times)

Barsook

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Allanaki City Elves
« on: October 28, 2013, 08:57:29 AM »
It was asked:

So, I agree with Nyr, if only to help retention.

Let's face it, elves are -hard- to play. They really are. Most new players won't understand that the elves in this game are thieves and sneaky bastards. It's just true. Give them a chance to play a human, to SEE other elves played, and then they might play an elf as their next and TOTALLY fucking rock it.

Except then almost no one will ever play city elves in the south, there's just not the PC social structure to support it, if you're playing in Allanak... And there should be, someone there to show you the ropes and what it means to be a proper elf, but there won't be, because no one wants to do it.

I think it would be be cool if there was a Allanak NON-rinthi city elf clan for the non-rinthi elves.  If Tuluk has one, why can't Allanak have one?  Or is there some IC reason behind Allanak not having one?

An elven "quarter" or negiborhood where most of a city's elves lived would make sense to me.  They could be mo r e tgan a sinlge tribe.   They may be forced or choose to live together because of racism or because they prefer to have neighbors that they have more in common with (than humans).

That idea sounds better, but how would that help a PC, if it's all virtual and the need the same race interaction?

Hey, guys. Guys! There seems to be some interest in giving city elves some love here. If you're serious about it, how about an actual thread?


Blur

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2013, 10:12:45 AM »
Someone mentioned something similar but I do like the idea: In terms of tribes the Jaxa Pah would have a sister tribe in the south side. The Jaxa Pah deals with all the dirt work but the southern sister tribe would deal with all legitimate business, contracts, merchant houses and the templars. Those in the know could sometimes view the two tribes as two sides of the same coin but the dealings and arrangements between the two tribes would be done in utter secrecy. If the templars would ever be able to pin anything on the legitimate business of the south side sister tribe something went horribly wrong.

After reading the documents on the fact that elves by nature trust their tribes mates somehow I feel there might be more leniency towards elven magickers within elven tribes as opposed to human tribes. Why should the human templars and the human noble Oash house be the only ones to use magickers as tools. I kinda see there being a very secretive part where they would hire elven gemmers to do work, even perhaps ungemmed elves to do work discretely. Maybe an extra gemmed elven tribe family would be added to handle that aspect of the unsavory business.

In terms of coded advantages I have no idea even giving them something like  sneak/hide is still kinda redundant and doesn't really help them much I think.  However perhaps elves being a bit more willing to hire, interact and learn to trust elven magickers would be a nice RP advantage to make up for it. I don't know, an elf can buff themselves magickally and be okay with using that to move around but how would they feel about being buffed by another elf and being able to perform a bit better?

Quirk

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2013, 10:36:22 AM »
After reading the documents on the fact that elves by nature trust their tribes mates somehow I feel there might be more leniency towards elven magickers within elven tribes as opposed to human tribes. Why should the human templars and the human noble Oash house be the only ones to use magickers as tools. I kinda see there being a very secretive part where they would hire elven gemmers to do work, even perhaps ungemmed elves to do work discretely. Maybe an extra gemmed elven tribe family would be added to handle that aspect of the unsavory business.

I like this. I like this a lot. I'm going to dump a large post with my thoughts shortly, but I want this idea to stay in the foreground.
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ShaLeah

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2013, 10:53:41 AM »
After reading the documents on the fact that elves by nature trust their tribes mates somehow I feel there might be more leniency towards elven magickers within elven tribes as opposed to human tribes. Why should the human templars and the human noble Oash house be the only ones to use magickers as tools. I kinda see there being a very secretive part where they would hire elven gemmers to do work, even perhaps ungemmed elves to do work discretely. Maybe an extra gemmed elven tribe family would be added to handle that aspect of the unsavory business.

I like this. I like this a lot. I'm going to dump a large post with my thoughts shortly, but I want this idea to stay in the foreground.


Because in Allanak the human race is the supreme race and they don't pretend to like/affiliate with sharps.  Personally I'd rather keep the longnecks in the alleys and if they're going to let 'gicks fraternize they'll be doing it in shadow, like the subspecies they are. And Highlord forbid the law finds out they're keeping magickers protected.

The laws in His City are very stringent, I don't see this happening realistically.
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HavokBlue

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #4 on: October 28, 2013, 11:39:50 AM »
There was an old elven tribe before the Jaxa called the Haruch Kemad, and the were heavily involved in magick, and now they are gone. Don't expect to see any sort of magical elven group appear ever.
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Quirk

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2013, 11:43:32 AM »
So, I did a fair bit of thinking about this in the recent Catching Up: City Elves thread, but the focus there was more on the hyperbolic bits of the documentation, and the bits that it doesn't cover so well. I'm going to take different angles here.

To recap some of the parts of the earlier discussion that are relevant, the free city elven population is meant to be similar in numbers to the free human population. In other words, a lot of the city is running on elven labour, and while elves are certainly disproportionately well represented among the criminal classes, most elf clans are providing enough benefit to the city to be worth the trouble of having them around. There are some really interesting roleplay tensions to explore here between elven sociopathy to those outside their tribe and elven pride on the one hand, and the necessities of survival as a disliked underclass on the other.

I personally think that while having a place for openly criminal elves would be pretty neat, there's a lot more RP meat in having a Southside clan which has a niche which is not openly criminal and which has to carefully manage its relationships to the powerful. I think this would also go a long way to adjust PC attitudes toward elves to make more sense: your human PC likely grew up on the same street as elves, played with them as a child, buys goods and necessities from them on occasion, drinks in bars which have elves present. They are, it goes without saying, untrustworthy and inferior to humans in every way that counts - but seriously pissing off an elf likely means pissing off a whole elven clan, and that isn't something you do lightly, especially if you lack connections.

What could a city elven clan offer PCs? Quite a lot, I think.
  • An elven clan is family. Your clanmates can be trusted to look out for you as long as you are acting in the best interests of the clan. This goes beyond mere employment.
  • An elven clan is not a rigid hierarchy with bossy leaders and tight schedules. You fulfill requests out of respect for your elders, rather than taking orders.
  • Your PC has clear motivations from the word go: protect and strengthen the clan.
  • Newbie support. Making newbies who do want to play elves as their first ever characters read the docs and join a clan would, I think, vastly improve their first experience of the game. For this to be an option though, we first need clans.
  • Room for interesting gemmer roles. While clan magicker numbers would have to be monitored harshly to prevent X-Men syndrome (perhaps only one gemmed in the clan at a time or something), elves are much more likely to accept a magicker sibling as one of theirs.

I think the circle of trusted tribemates would go a long way to counterbalance the human advantages of employment and mount-based mobility. Sure, Amos and Malik the independent hunters can team up, but Amos doesn't know for sure that Malik won't steal his mount, slit his waterskin and leave him to die in the desert.

What are the difficulties?

Well, any such clan would depend heavily on trade, and it can't just hire in crafter PCs when it has a lack. Some care would need to be taken over crafting the makeup of the clan so it has reasons for interaction with other PCs and pressures to attend to. The basic description of the elven mindset in the docs is hazardous to continued PC survival never mind clan survival - it would be imperative that players, including newbies, didn't favour kleptomania over keeping the powerful placated. It would pull a bunch of players away from existing clans and spread us all a little thinner. Lastly, and perhaps hardest to bridge, is how such a clan could interact politically. Vastly weaker than a great House, noble or merchant, it would have little competition on its own level to deal with - it would essentially be playing on the same scale as the Byn, which is little more than a tool to be used by the powerful. There is a real danger that any such clan would cross the bored sights of a Merchant House player determined to take offence and be exterminated.

If some way could be found round the difficulties, I think there'd be room for something pretty awesome. The adjustment in reactions it would provoke would also I think make even unclanned elves a little more interesting to play.
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Quirk

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #6 on: October 28, 2013, 11:53:04 AM »
Because in Allanak the human race is the supreme race and they don't pretend to like/affiliate with sharps.  Personally I'd rather keep the longnecks in the alleys and if they're going to let 'gicks fraternize they'll be doing it in shadow, like the subspecies they are.

The longnecks aren't a small number of skulking alley dwellers, they're almost half the free portion of the city. Most independent humans should be bloody careful in how they go about bad-mouthing a sharp.

Edited to add: I'm talking about working with gemmers, not ungemmed, of course. Keeping ungemmed tribemates doesn't seem smart, unless you really are a bunch of filthy alley-dwellers. But working with a gemmer? That I can see.
« Last Edit: October 28, 2013, 11:55:36 AM by Quirk »
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boog

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #7 on: October 28, 2013, 11:55:35 AM »
Even if it wasn't "meant" to be... that IS how it is in Allanak.
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Quirk

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #8 on: October 28, 2013, 11:56:46 AM »
Even if it wasn't "meant" to be... that IS how it is in Allanak.

It's how PC roleplay is currently. It's not how the city "is" virtually. PC roleplay can be changed - and I contend would be more interesting for that change.
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HavokBlue

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #9 on: October 28, 2013, 12:07:23 PM »
While I agree with you that logically the way elves are represented by PCs doesn't make a lot of sense for a functioning society, it is an attitude that staff seem to support, it is what it is and I don't think a GDB thread will change it.

I think it will be a while before the Jaxa get their revamp, so maybe we could use this thread to propose some constructive feedback that staff may possibly take into account when trying to make the clan more viable on a day to day basis and more interesting to players. Otherwise they are basically just the long-eared version of the Guild, and what player will do business with elves when there are humans available for the same thing? All those abundant elven PCs?
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Eurynomos

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #10 on: October 28, 2013, 12:08:24 PM »
Also, keep in mind that Elves make up a very small percentage of the slave labour population. They aren't exactly great slaves, or manual labor cronies.
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ShaLeah

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #11 on: October 28, 2013, 12:15:25 PM »
Quote from: Quirk link=topic=46421.msg784256#msg784256
Most independent humans should be bloody careful in how they go about bad-mouthing a sharp.

No way. The lowliest independent human should still be able to bad mouth any sharp anywhere not Tuluk. Doesn't matter if they're half the population, fact is, they're still sub-human, still thieves and liars and worthy of scorn.

Would the humans allow that shit to happen is the question.
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Quirk

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #12 on: October 28, 2013, 12:27:00 PM »
Quote from: Quirk link=topic=46421.msg784256#msg784256
Most independent humans should be bloody careful in how they go about bad-mouthing a sharp.

No way. The lowliest independent human should still be able to bad mouth any sharp anywhere not Tuluk. Doesn't matter if they're half the population, fact is, they're still sub-human, still thieves and liars and worthy of scorn.

Would the humans allow that shit to happen is the question.

Yeah, of course they would. Despite the crim-code, ICly Nakki templars don't care very much about petty theft, vandalism, even assault - as long as nobody important gets upset. Joe Blow the human commoner bad-mouths an elf in the Gaj and gets taken into an alley and beat stupid by a bunch of elven tribals? It's his own damn fault.

The problem is, as it always should be, who's going to back you up? The militia aren't there to protect human commoners from being stupid. They're there to protect the rich and powerful. Most of these rich and powerful are humans, but there's no mileage at all in defending some cocksure mouthy human from reprisals at the hands of a powerful local elven family.
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Molten Heart

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #13 on: October 28, 2013, 12:27:46 PM »
It can be useful to keep a few elves around to be scapegoats when things don't work out.

Quirk

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2013, 12:33:33 PM »
While I agree with you that logically the way elves are represented by PCs doesn't make a lot of sense for a functioning society, it is an attitude that staff seem to support, it is what it is and I don't think a GDB thread will change it.

I think it will be a while before the Jaxa get their revamp, so maybe we could use this thread to propose some constructive feedback that staff may possibly take into account when trying to make the clan more viable on a day to day basis and more interesting to players. Otherwise they are basically just the long-eared version of the Guild, and what player will do business with elves when there are humans available for the same thing? All those abundant elven PCs?

Well - I think a huge part of the issues with PC elven representation is down to the lack of addressing what would ICly be the mainstream city elf in game. Elves have lost any kind of sensible place in Nak. The danger I see is that "City Elf" becomes an option marked "roll a short lived kleptomaniac" that nobody but the very bored deigns to select. Your line "what player will do business with elves when there are humans available for the same thing?" needs to be addressed if elves are to actually be a viable option. I very much think that a largely legal Southside elven clan could go a long way to change perceptions.
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catchall

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2013, 01:11:07 PM »
Most of these rich and powerful are humans, but there's no mileage at all in defending some cocksure mouthy human from reprisals at the hands of a powerful local elven family.

However, you're also assuming that it makes IC sense for elf tribes to get all whipped up in a violent frenzy over rude comments (which every elf probably hears on a daily basis).  Elves are proud, but I've never seen anything to suggest that they are unusually prone to violently defending their honor against racist comments.  Independent humans also have buddies and band together in groups.  The elves don't necessarily know that the person making rude comments doesn't have backup of his own.  It's my estimate that you'd have to be talking about some pretty out-of-the-ordinary, aggressive bigotry before elves would embark on such a mission of righteous vengeance.  All the best roleplayed elves I've ever known wouldn't bat an eye at being casually called sharp/skinny/neck, even by a human business associate.  If anything, getting overly irate about it is the mark of a noob.

(As a counterpoint: I *would* expect that elves might get a taste for vengeance if you specifically insult their tribe, but I think it's completely nonsensical for an elf to gets upset over anti-elf comments or sentiment.  Elves don't trust elves either!  )

Blur

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2013, 01:33:09 PM »
What we want to avoid is something like council of Allanaki mages. What we want to promote is what is already in the documentation that states some organization/individual do make use of certain elementalists from time to time. There is a difference between being friends and lovers with magickers and using their services discretely. An Allanaki Human would normally never cross that line where a mage becomes anything tools for Templar and nobles and perhaps themselves, so it would probably further disgust and enrage them to think that elves would find more chances to cross the line.

Even then, any dealing with magickers, would be done discretely as it is currently done now by the various mundanes who interact with mages. The difference being that for humans it would be more due to social taboos and outright fears but for elves dealings with magickers are kept discrete because you could potentially turn a fist fight into one with high powered guns or bring unwanted attention to yourself by the round ears. I mean if elves are putting magickers to use, and gaining a trust and a working relationship with them there are still plenty of human gemmed mages with human bosses who won't like that or will be sought after by other organizations who may hire human magickers/assassin them to deal with the elven magickers.


This is not even a 'lets give mages more interaction and things to do post' because I honestly feel human gemmed mages get plenty of interaction with all kinds of people for all kinds of reason, so no problems there. However code-wise I can't think of anything that would make me want to give up riding in addition to all the other elven disadvantages,  Rp wise though the ability to interact in a more positive way with magickers and not feel like a total twink is pretty tempting. The chance for my mundanes to experience scenes with mages where I'm not shivering in fear or about to piss my pants seems like a pretty significant perk. Again this would be at the individual character level not at the organized magickal groups level other clans evolved to before, this discrete way of interacting with magickers though would bleed into the elves tribes. They wouldn't be openly hiring them like Oash, but there would definitely be dealing with them.



« Last Edit: October 28, 2013, 01:45:13 PM by Blur »

Quirk

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2013, 02:20:43 PM »
Most of these rich and powerful are humans, but there's no mileage at all in defending some cocksure mouthy human from reprisals at the hands of a powerful local elven family.
However, you're also assuming that it makes IC sense for elf tribes to get all whipped up in a violent frenzy over rude comments (which every elf probably hears on a daily basis).  Elves are proud, but I've never seen anything to suggest that they are unusually prone to violently defending their honor against racist comments.

Oh, absolutely. I doubt any elf's going to start sharpening her dagger on hearing "longear" or "skinny" or some other casual slur. Engineering a confrontation, though, should be a very iffy thing to do. Possibly insulting an important tribe member might also be dangerous. I'm thinking of this in terms of actual real world racism, of groups which have experienced some level of oppression despite being numerous and having strong family ties. There will be members of such communities who're insulted only from positions of absolute safety, and you don't really want to come to their attention by glassing their second cousin.

Independent humans also have buddies and band together in groups.  The elves don't necessarily know that the person making rude comments doesn't have backup of his own.

The difference is that a human without the protection of a major House likely only has a handful of associates - the elf has a very large extended family. This is a fight that it's unwise for the human to start.
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RogueGunslinger

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #18 on: October 28, 2013, 03:44:35 PM »
I can't help from reading this thread that most of the player-base just doesn't give a shit. We know what elves need to be enjoyable, they need a tribe. The fact that so many people are being negative towards the ideas in this thread is irritating. It's like Elven hate somehow extended to outside of the game.

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #19 on: October 28, 2013, 03:57:26 PM »
An easy, light fix to the low Allanaki elven population that I would love to see would be a socially accepted increase in the kind of jobs elves could have. I once stored an elf because I couldn't find another job besides grebbing that they'd keep their neck doing, and also interested me. Nyr replied to me, There's nothing in the documentation that says elves can't greb. However, the playerbase itself has limited the kind of jobs elves can have. They're left with crafting (which is narrowed further still by a cultural inability to hunt and a social inability to greb), Kurac, being what amounts to a permanent runner in the Byn who is unable to go on contracts (I can't imagine a worse fate personally), bardic/performance type of things which not everyone has the OOC creativity to do, and crime.

If someone were to go to the elves helpfile or create a jobs helpfile that kept you from seeing elves hunting in the wilderness but allowed them everything else, that would fix it in a snap.
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boog

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #20 on: October 28, 2013, 05:03:01 PM »
I can't help from reading this thread that most of the player-base just doesn't give a shit. We know what elves need to be enjoyable, they need a tribe. The fact that so many people are being negative towards the ideas in this thread is irritating. It's like Elven hate somehow extended to outside of the game.

I love elves.

I love playing elves!

But I feel I'm not very good at them, so I don't very often.

I do not hate elves! I'm sorry if my post came across that way.
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valeria

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #21 on: October 28, 2013, 05:10:50 PM »
I'd be all for a playable elven tribe in Allanak proper.  Why?  Because I think there are probably virtual elven tribes all over the seedier parts of Allanak, so it wouldn't be crazy to have a playable tribe, and I just can't imagine that's it's very enjoyable to play an elf without a tribe.  Still, I don't think they'd have any sort of recognition or standing, like they might in other places.

Though now I want to try playing a tribeless celf.  Just to see if it would be as hard as I think it would be.   ::)
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evilcabbage

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #22 on: October 28, 2013, 05:21:45 PM »
I'd be all for a playable elven tribe in Allanak proper.  Why?  Because I think there are probably virtual elven tribes all over the seedier parts of Allanak, so it wouldn't be crazy to have a playable tribe, and I just can't imagine that's it's very enjoyable to play an elf without a tribe.  Still, I don't think they'd have any sort of recognition or standing, like they might in other places.

Though now I want to try playing a tribeless celf.  Just to see if it would be as hard as I think it would be.   ::)

There is a tribe of elves living in the seedier part of Allanak. They're called the Jaxa Pah.

I don't know why you think they aren't in Allanak. The Labyrinth -is- the seedy part of Allanak. That -is- where all the Allanaki city elves who are worth anything at all live, because the city proper doesn't accept their shit. They can't operate down southside because the law would keelhaul them in a heartbeat. The law doesn't go into the Labyrinth. The law is almost, dare I say, -afraid- to go into the Labyrinth.
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valeria

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #23 on: October 28, 2013, 05:22:39 PM »
I'd be all for a playable elven tribe in Allanak proper.  Why?  Because I think there are probably virtual elven tribes all over the seedier parts of Allanak, so it wouldn't be crazy to have a playable tribe, and I just can't imagine that's it's very enjoyable to play an elf without a tribe.  Still, I don't think they'd have any sort of recognition or standing, like they might in other places.

Though now I want to try playing a tribeless celf.  Just to see if it would be as hard as I think it would be.   ::)

There is a tribe of elves living in the seedier part of Allanak. They're called the Jaxa Pah.

I don't know why you think they aren't in Allanak. The Labyrinth -is- the seedy part of Allanak. That -is- where all the Allanaki city elves who are worth anything at all live, because the city proper doesn't accept their shit. They can't operate down southside because the law would keelhaul them in a heartbeat. The law doesn't go into the Labyrinth. The law is almost, dare I say, -afraid- to go into the Labyrinth.

I beg to differ with your idea of the Labyrinth is why  :-*
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Patuk

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Re: Allanaki City Elves
« Reply #24 on: October 28, 2013, 06:03:39 PM »
I'd love for there to be an southside Allanaki elven tribe, I've been entertaining the notion of a family role call for a while now. I think that between the Akai Sjir having a very.. Different mindset from other elves, and the Jaxa Pah not only being elves but also 'rinthers, a tribe based in Allanak proper would be a good thing indeed.
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