Author Topic: Changing the world and entering paths uncharted by code  (Read 724 times)

Changing the world and entering paths uncharted by code
« on: April 23, 2017, 06:43:23 PM »
This is a topic that comes up a fair amount in passing on the board. How much is the world changeable by players if they put in the time and money? Using a throwaway account as I'd rather not reveal myself in case I pursue these things, plus I think this could be construed as a bit of a probing question which staff is sensitive about.

Examples of ambitious ideas that come to mind:
(1) opening a new player-run bar
(2) eradicating or severely reducing some subpopulation of the game, similar to the way kanks were eradicated? magickers, nobles, half-giants, or what have you...
(3) creating a new city with different laws, perhaps run by a council of players?
(4) learning how to read, then discovering scrolls and becoming a sorcerer in-game? (this actually seems way cooler than rolling one)
(5) killing NPCs - can they subsequently be removed from the game? is this an unreasonable burden for builders?

Let's take an example which I have a particular interest in as I play shady characters. In one of the GDB threads somewhere it was said that the population of Allanak is somewhere around 250k and that all the populations are a certain portion. I'm not sure what the percent for half-giants are, but let's say it is around 5% of the population, and clearly a ton of them are employed by the Arm. Let's say you have a criminal gang and you feel that half-giants are a problem for crime (especially solo as they're so dumb that's it's hard to communicate/bribe them), so you systematically begin to "disappear" them. If you have a half-dozen people each disappearing a half-giant a week, you could theoretically reduce the population significantly in a few years of game time, right? How would staff respond to such an initiative? Would a Red Robe simply wipe out the gang?


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Re: Changing the world and entering paths uncharted by code
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2017, 03:55:51 PM »
#1  This is entirely possible with the player clan system.
#2  Probably not, from a player driven perspective.  If it was something we wanted to happen, we could make a plot out of it to involve PCs though.
#3  "City" (or town) implies a population of hundreds if not more, I doubt this will happen.  There's nothing stopping you from getting a bunch of players and setting up shop in some corner of the world and saying it's Doodsville and you're in charge of it.  (This has already been done - more than once since I've been on staff)
#4  Learning to read is not out of the question, never has been.  This too has been done.  There have even been code changes put in to make it "easier" (in a code sense - it's still ICly hard) to do.  Becoming a sorcerer - harder still, but who knows!
#5  This too already happens sometimes.  Sometimes we choose to remove an NPC, replace them with another NPC (if they fill some kind of role), or just ignore that it happened if their death not in the context of some kind of meaningful plot.  Like if you kill an NPC in the Commoner's Quarter because you mugged them, we are likely not going to replace them.  If you run a plot, with staff communication, to kill an NPC for some meaningful purpose - that would be supported.

As a general rule, depopulating things makes the world a little less full, and most people don't want that.  Frankly, building is a chore (this is somewhat by design), and... fyi - stuff is already being built all the time - rooms, NPCs, objects.  Some of these last forever, others are a one-use thing and are never seen again.

I think where you're really going with this is how some players are extremely motivated to "leave a mark on the world?"  That does come up from time to time, and I don't think it's necessarily contentious (at least to the extent that you need to build a gdb account specifically to ask this question).   I would suggest that it's possible and always has been, there are examples of it throughout the game world already.

Is it easy?  Nope.  Not really.  Especially when it's destructive in nature.  We don't want it to be, honestly.  We'd prefer to see it happen from an organic perspective rather than catering to the whims of people who just need to have that itch scratched and set out with that from a meta-goal starting point.  You say you want to "leave a mark on the world", I say I'd rather support a plot with a more substantive goal than just changing stuff.

On the other hand, if you make it a plot, and involve a lot of players, and it's something meaningful that's done for a reason - now we're talking about something that piques my interests.  At the end of the day you have to convince both your storyteller (who likely will be doing the grunt work for enacting the change) and your Admin (who has to sign off on it, and may or may not help with the changes) that the juice is worth the squeeze.