Holy Wars

DaskalosDaskalos Credit Whore ExtraordinareRolling amongst piles of credits.Member Posts: 1,516 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited December 2012 in Harpy's Head Tavern

NOTE: This thread is not for a discussion about Iosyne's order, though she will be referenced here, but rather is for ideas on how the Holy War System could be dramatically improved.

Holy Wars right now have several glaring holes in them:

  • You have no way of knowing who is or is not in an enemy order, save guessing from titles.
  • 'rogue' PK'ers can flock to congregations to bolster an orders fighting
  • If you pick on an order with an inactive god\OH, then surrendering is impossible and you could conceivably draw out a Holy War for 2 years (25 RL days) leaving an entire order open PK during that time
  • Unlike the disabled war system (may you never, ever return) there isn't an Active Roster feature, so everyone is open PK all the time. This leads to people just not logging in.
  • When you have a god such as Iosyne that is going to attract more combatants than most orders, you create a 'super order' that is going to roll over anyone they face, simply due to player spread.

Now, some things have already been done to address some of these points (Yay, Razmael!) in regards to this - orders can now surrender immediately, though it still costs 75% of your shrines, and he was really cool at lowering our Surrender tactic down so that more of us can use it from OR10.

Now, some ideas:

  • Change the way Holy Wars work to mimic part of the ylem system, in that areas around conflicted shrines become a 'free pk' zone for anyone. This would help counteract the player spread issue, as other orders could then come assist. if you're not in that zone, or do not have the 'holywar aura' then you're not open PK and thus should be left alone. This will allow the non-comms to back out of order wars.
  • Only those in the opposing order can defile, though, and there names become highlighted to take out the confusion of 'are they or aren't they?'
  • Change automatic surrender to cost Shrine Essence instead of lost shrines, because putting up (and taking down) shrines is hella boring.
  • On that note, change how shrines are built\destroyed altogether. I don't mind the praying thing, but it would be nice to be able to use blood again as well, maybe for up to half of a shrine?
  • Create a tiering system, where war can only be declared on an order of similar size with similar activity. This I'm not sure about, but what's to stop Iosyne's Order from declaring on someone over and over again to reap easy Shrine Energy knowing they'll auto surrender since they can't fight back? Heck, we could do it right now to someone like Chakrasul who is pretty much inactive.




Message #17059 Sent By: Oleis           Received On: 1/03/2014/17:24
"If it makes you feel better, just checking your artifact list threatens to crash my mudlet."

Post edited by Daskalos on


  • DaskalosDaskalos Credit Whore Extraordinare Rolling amongst piles of credits.Member Posts: 1,516 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2012




    Message #17059 Sent By: Oleis           Received On: 1/03/2014/17:24
    "If it makes you feel better, just checking your artifact list threatens to crash my mudlet."

  • AlexinaAlexina the Haunted Soul Member Posts: 851 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Okay. I'll offer some input on holy wars: they suck.

    I've been wanting a holy war pretty much ever since I got back into an order, and when we finally get one it ends after two hours. For me, it's the biggest anticlimax in Aetolia since the Dreikathi events. Basically, they used to be about attacking the other side in a more limited way than all out wars - a way to earn prestige and the favour of your Divine - but now it's more convenient and enjoyable to simply surrender.

    So, there were a few other points in Daskalos's post I wanted to address. "Rogue 'pk'ers", or whatever else you want to call them, can join a Congregation after war has been declared, but I think you're making an issue out of a non-issue. In this last holy war, one person (Exayne) joined Iosyne's congregation, and that was a day before the war was even declared. Likewise, it is conceivably possibly to draw out a holy war for 25 days, but as far as I know, nothing like this has ever happened. It seems like a waste of resources to put mechanics in place to prevent possible abuse (unless there's some quick, clever easy fix) when all the past wars have not been dominated by these rogue playerkillers or been drawn-out as long as possible in order to kill people as soon as they log in for almost a real life month. I guess a quick solution would be to prevent people from joining a Congregation when war is declared (as opposed to when it starts), and limit the maximum time of a war to a real life week. Ideally, you wouldn't be able to surrender until at least half this time has passed. Also, going to echo some of Daskalos's concerns:

    - Showing enemy order/congregation in a different colour (much like enemy militia in war) seems like an awesome idea.
    - Raising/defiling shrines is tedious and boring. You just sit in the same room for half an hour doing nothing at all. So, so boring.

    I don't really like the idea of a tiered system, for various reasons. If people continuously declare war on the same order over and over with the intention of griefing those players, I think it would be a better idea for the administration to step in and stop it. Basically, it feels like any recent conflict has been more about attacking the other players' morale than maintaining an in-character conflict axis, to the point where a lot of people actually don't want to particiate in PK anymore. Even Spinesreach got fed up with Bloodloch. The entire game feels skewed. Why are we in a mindset where it's better to put restrictions in place right now because someone (someone usually being Bloodloch) might go out of their way to make other peoples' playtime unenjoyable? Unless we fix this, only new issues will crop up with whatever conflict mechanics we might get. There used to be war, there used to be Ciem raids, Ylem fights were a lot more frequent, holywars actually had people fighting, and so on and so forth. The Fracture was added as an incentive for conflict, but it ended up being nothing more than a gank-squad routine.

    I've heard a lot of complaints about Iosyne's order specifically, and while I love her so much and feel that my playtime in Aetolia has been much more rewarding since I joined her order, it's not a good thing if people actually stop logging in during holy wars or whatnot. I'm not sure whether Daskalos's point about 'super orders' is valid or not, but I've actually heard concerns voiced from other players about the Order (there were some comments about it in different clans, on the old forums, in the chats, etcetera). I felt that people needed to give it some time, because there hasn't been an active Divine in Bloodloch for ages and no one really knows where things are heading, but it might actually be worth discussing. I don't know.
  • ArekaAreka Drifting in a sea of wenches' bosomsMember Posts: 1,693 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2012
    The need for mechanical intervention comes from the fact that, traditionally at least, the playerbase doesn't police itself well. The base issues simply will not change until the players themselves change, and when many do not even recognize or acknowledge that there IS a problem (usually the ones that are being problematic, and those they listen to are either ignored, or do not step in and say 'yo dude that's not cool'), it becomes a matter of putting in other constraints to address it.
  • RouxRoux Member Posts: 114 ✭✭✭
    Areka's pretty much hit it spot on. Things that have been in effect and working for so long are not quite as effective perhaps a little more recently, whether the reason be something we can't really put a finger on, or the playerbase shifting its priorities. That's what it seems like to me anyway.
  • IlyonIlyon Member Posts: 746 ✭✭✭
    Would be great if defiling could be more interesting.

    No on any kind of a tiered system - otherwise the small orders could defile shrines of bigger ones while being immune to holy war declarations from their target. Kind of silly.

    Some kind of flagging who is involved would be great. I disagree with allowing non-members to participate though, that will turn order wars into city-vs-city wars.

  • NolaNola Member Posts: 688 ✭✭✭✭✭
    My take on all of the points:
    - I also think there should be some way to determine who is in an order or not, and who is actively participating in PK-warranted actions like defiling shrines. You could also, alternatively, make it to where the defiler's names show up in the Order logs of the destroyed shrine. 
    - On the matter of congregations, I've never felt that congregates should even be allowed to participate in Holy Wars, which are supposed to be between the divine's chosen members making up an order. Congregates are there to learn and prove themselves in various ways, but they're not yet accepted into that divine's following. That they're allowed to help fight off defilers from shrines in a war between -orders-, when the congregate pool can be quite big while the order is quite small, seems unfair to me. They could easily help with non-pk related things, like shrine scoping. 
    - I think the 'super order' point is circumstantial and can't really be.. used as a reason for change. New god, new shiny, attracts certain people. But isn't always going to be the case with orders. BL has a new active divine, who happens to appreciate brutal PK that appeals to a big portion of BL and it's PKers. Not all of its Pkers, but a lot of them. Plausibly, any Order could do this, if it attracted enough people within the vein of PKers. 
    - So, I also don't like the idea of tiered. 
    - I think other Orders, instigated only by the Divinities in question, should be allowed to help another Order out. 
    - Shrines should be the main focal point where all conflict takes place. I'm not sure if it should work like the ylem system, I think that if it had similarities, like with defiling aura for enemies in range that would be good.
    - I agree fully about shrines (and shrine essence) and the dreadful, dragging act of rebuilding and taking them down. 
  • HavenHaven World Burner Flight SchoolMember Posts: 2,385 ✭✭✭✭✭
    What about Severn's Order? When their members are supposed to be secret save for the ones that expose themselves, how does flagging Order members during war come into play then?
    ¤ Si vis pacem, para bellum. ¤
    Someone powerful says, "We're going to have to delete you."
  • AeronAeron Member Posts: 8

    Haven said:
    What about Severn's Order? When their members are supposed to be secret save for the ones that expose themselves, how does flagging Order members during war come into play then?
    Arguments could be made that if you go into Holy War against someone, some of the Order members should be view-able by the opposition. Though, I'd probably just go the notification of defilers route. 
  • SeirSeir Seein' All the Things Getting high off your emotionMember Posts: 992 ✭✭✭✭✭
    As far as telling who the opposition is, just give an aura to anyone participating in sanctification, defiling, or any general Holy War affairs. Those with said aura will keep it for a long period of time and will be colored on WHO as opposition. This allows those who want to remain hidden and free from participation the ability to do so (e.g. the true non-combatants in an Order) while exposing those actively competing against you.
  • NolaNola Member Posts: 688 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The one issue I find with this is with the people who may not participate in anything with the shrines that would give an aura, while still participating in combat. 
  • DaskalosDaskalos Credit Whore Extraordinare Rolling amongst piles of credits.Member Posts: 1,516 ✭✭✭✭✭

    The idea behind the auras is that you would be able to prevent a non-comms from being dragged into it. Our order has 9 people, of them, maybe 4 can be considered 'combatants' - and I'm including Nola in that group. Someone like Lianca? Eh, not a combatant and I wouldn't want to see her quit playing because of an order war.

    Areka hit the nail on the head though. The playerbase can't police itself, and therefore there needs to be mechanical restrictions. That's not really the issue here, or the point of this thread though, as I don't like bashing any one playerbase because every side has done it at some point or another. It's more about trying to find solutions to make the Holy War system enjoyable for all without sucking the life out of the game.



    Message #17059 Sent By: Oleis           Received On: 1/03/2014/17:24
    "If it makes you feel better, just checking your artifact list threatens to crash my mudlet."

  • IreaIrea Member Posts: 33 ✭✭
    Bringing something up that hasn't been touched. Not sure if it's even a good idea or not, but here goes.

    I'm all for RP being involved before starting any kind of conflict. It makes sense with a form of build-up for something as large as a Holy War, and at least some kind of interaction between the members of those Orders or public display by the Divine involved. My simple suggestion is that people should be able to create a log where interaction on behalf of the Order is documented and can be accessed when a war is declared. To take less space, say that the records are kept for a limited time, like one in game decade.

    Maybe it's too much/too complicated/unnecessary, but I think it might be neat for others to go in and check what's happened between their Order and one of the others. Just a suggestion to toss in with all the other ideas!

  • NolaNola Member Posts: 688 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I'm a little bit confused by the suggestion, to be honest.
  • IreaIrea Member Posts: 33 ✭✭
    Say that an event unfolds between two Divine that has a slow build-up, perhaps players being involved in some way, each steps are recorded in these special logs. For example; Divine 1 (or a representative) makes an appearance at Divine 2's special ceremony, spewing all kinds of things. Order of Divine 2 makes a mark in the logs. There could be one log for each opposing Deity (not a gathered log for everything).

    Later on, when a Holy War is declared, the records between both Orders can be perused to see what caused the declaration. Before this, the record would be for respective orders only. That way a declaration of war could not be made without some solid ground.

    As I said, just a thought, to bring some more rp in and prevent anyone declaring war just because another Order is weak and happens to be on the opposing side. *shrug*
  • DaingeanDaingean Xanhaal, probably.Member Posts: 258 ✭✭✭
    edited December 2012
    News boards exist for this.

    I think that sort of thing rests on the shoulders of the players.

    I'm not even sure it could be coded properly. Someone still writes the events posts, after all.

    Also, the reason 'our tenets are opposed to your tenets' is valid. And it's all that really needs to exist.

    @Edit: @Irea's suggestion, obviously. I have no real opinion as to the rest.
    Proudly fighting against Greytolia since the [approximately] 3/1/2010 at 18:00.
  • AzraelAzrael Member Posts: 119 ✭✭✭
    I really like the idea of congregations being closed off after a holy war has been declared. However, I don't think that it would solve any issues with people joining just for the PK since most actions of this nature are planned in advance and an order could recruit prior to the war being declared. I disagree with the notion that congregants shouldn't be allowed to participate though, simply because there isn't a higher honor, in my opinion, than fighting for and potentially laying down your life for your beliefs.

    Maybe put into place a time frame that has to pass before someone can join another congregation? If Person-A is in Dhar's congregation and hears that Haern and Severn are going to go into a holy war so the person quits Dhar's congregation and attempts to join Haern's only to be told that he/she must wait 3-5 years before joining another congregation.

    Also, if the auras only worked during a holy war, I'd be all for it, but if they happened all the time then I think it would remove part of the cloak and dagger aspect of the game. That in itself is why I'm extremely against a log file stating who destroyed a shrine, and no, I'm not attempting to hide my own misdeeds as I haven't touched any shrines in a very long time, simply pointing out the fact that there is a huge amount of sheer satisfaction that a player gets when they've been able to complete such an act under the radar - just as the other side receives satisfaction when they catch a person in the act and slay them.

    Could also shuck the entire aura idea and take a snippet or two out of the old war system and give each order mini-militias that combatants can join. The orders Champion can act as a general of sorts and could even promote ranks and yes, congregants would be able to join as recruits but I'd put limitations on any ranks that they could get and save the prestige for actual order members. This way you could simply honors the person and see that they're in the orders militia and that would separate the combatants from the non-combatant members. To help ensure that, only allow those in an orders militia the ability to destroy a shrine.

    I dunno, I'm just slinging out different ideas to give options to the conversation.
  • HavenHaven World Burner Flight SchoolMember Posts: 2,385 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Here's a rough sketch of a possible Order conflict system that I think would be fun for combatants and non-combatants alike. Feel free to critique/flame/add to it as you'd like!

    Some rules/guidelines:
    1. Joining a Congregation will be the trial period in which you must learn about the Divine and prove yourself in some fashion.
    2. Members of the Congregation are NOT allowed to participate in any fashion during WAR TIME activities.
    3. Joining an Order now fits you with a Brand/Trinket/Totem of some kind. (Visibility can be toggled, true purposes will be outlined further down.) 
    4. Orders will be given score cards or something to keep track of wins in each respective challenge.
    Shrines will have three size categories called Master, Major and Minor. Each Order will have one Master Shrine and it'll be located at the entrance of their Temple/Sanctum. The Order's members/congregation will determine how large of an area they want to 'control/monitor/put effort behind'. Majors will be limited to one per area for each Order. Each Order can build up to a maximum amount of Major shrines (let's say six as an example) but must have a minimum of two or three.

    Stage 1: Preparation / Spreading the 'Good' Word. (Essentially peace time. If you want peace, prepare for war. Strategize!)
    Divine Orders and Congregations will now have 3 "Wonders" made available to them that they can tend to during peace time: shrines, monuments, and sanctums (temples). It is only during this phase that shrines can be erected (up to a maximum) so it is up to the Order and their congregation to determine how large of an area they want to 'control/monitor/put effort behind/upkeep'.

    Stage 2: Skill Challenge
    There will be 3 different challenges chosen at random in a set of matches (best of 3) to determine the winner of a war. (You might get Symbol Limbo twice and Avatar Seminar once for your war as an example.)

    • Symbol Limbo
    When this challenge is initiated, each participating Order's shrines are locked into place and no new shrines may be erected. Unfinished shrines are automatically destroyed. The Order's respective Divine Symbol is broken into x parts and spread out among their Major Shrines. The first Order to collect all the opposing Order's Symbol, fit the pieces together correctly to make the symbol whole again, and plant it on their Master Shrine as a sacrifice wins. Major shrines will either have a symbol piece or nothing at all inside when destroyed.

    Example: Khepri's crow symbol is broken into six parts (to match their amount of Major Shrines) and Dhaivol's skullcap/hourglass symbol is broken into four parts (to match their Major Shrines set up). Dhaivol's Order manages to collect all six pieces and place the crow on Dhaivol's Master Shrine for sacrifice and thus wins this round.
    • Avatar Seminar
    For this challenge, the players are tasked with building a supreme Avatar (possibly player controlled) to raid the enemy Order's Temple. Basic attacks will work in a rock/paper/scissors format I think. Additional powers/upgrades can be awarded with wins in this challenge on the score card. If the Avatar is player controlled, I'd recommend making use of the PSYCOMBAT feature somehow so it's not reliant on PK and noncoms can have a go. OR when this challenge is initiated, each Major Shrine will have a corresponding Shrine Guardian that spawns whose strength is strictly linked with the amount of essence offered. (The strength will be tiered at say... 25 million essence for lvl 70 mob, 50 million essence for lvl 160 mob, 100 million essence for lvl 250 mob, etc.) Essence should be cleared yearly or something appropriate. WINS in this category may grant special powers to Shrine Guardian or even add additional Guardians per Major Shrine or unlock powers for other challenges.
    • Spank 'em Sanctum
    This challenge will heavily rely on player-killing. There will be fixed monuments located all around Sapience (not all will be activated so it'd do you well to go exploring to find 'em all) and they will pulse with energy demanding a blood sacrifice. A pulsing monument will ping to the Order when an 'enemy/opposing faction' enters its proximity. Whatever team has the most kills wins. This could be fleshed out more but I'm feeling lazy. I'll get back to this one eventually or you guys can help flesh it out or criticize or whatever you do best.

    Stage 3: Revelation
    This stage will essentially be the cool down phase where awards are handed out where warranted. I recommend basic prizes similar to the ylem bonuses or something. But for subsequent wins allow for special prizes like honor lines for the participating Order or special Order only skills/races/languages/etc. This can be fleshed out too to mean more!
    ¤ Si vis pacem, para bellum. ¤
    Someone powerful says, "We're going to have to delete you."
  • AithinneAithinne Member Posts: 2

    Based on the Dhar/Ivoln war, I thought I'd mention a few points. I'm not sure if  mechanical changes are really necessary, particularly now that surrendering is an option at any point during a war. That said, I would fully support the following:


    1. Removing the open PK and replacing it with something more like a focus fight. If a shrine is being defiled by an order member during a war, they will immediately receive an aura that is different than the regular aura. This will also initiate an area within x rooms from the shrine. Anyone from either order or congregation who enters would receive that same aura. PK would then be open on anyone with the aura - and only on those people.

    2. Implementing some sort of surrender option for orders with inactive heads (like automatically granting it to every active person of the highest active rank for the duration of the war, maybe.)

    3. Don't keep an sort of public "rosters" for order and congregation members. If #1 goes in, that will make participants obvious enough. Leaders of the order can still be identified by status as representatives, being seen in shrine locations during the war prep period, etc. I really like the RP behind certain orders having secret membership, and this would help maintain that.

  • DaskalosDaskalos Credit Whore Extraordinare Rolling amongst piles of credits.Member Posts: 1,516 ✭✭✭✭✭
    On point 2, Razmael was awesome and slipped the surrender option down for us. You'd just need to talk to our awesome producer.



    Message #17059 Sent By: Oleis           Received On: 1/03/2014/17:24
    "If it makes you feel better, just checking your artifact list threatens to crash my mudlet."

  • WingerWinger Member Posts: 10
    Hadoryu said:
    Holy Wars will never work because there are too many Gods and too few players. You are guaranteed to always be putting vastly unequal forces against each other and PK based conflict always goes to the way of the superior PK force, no matter how many 'equalizing' measures you put in. Order sizes are wildly mismatched, mostly because of the frivolous (ridiculously so) nature of Gods.

    So just give up!

    There, glad I saved you so much trouble.
    I was literally just ranting about this. If Aet wants to focus on Gods being a central point of the game, they need to decrease the number and increase the substance with less changing of the Gods whole philosophy. I just returned and Iosyne is some kind of god of slaughter? Chakrasul is dead or something? All these changes may sound fun, but they're ultimately confusing and disorienting, particularly to people who are really attached to their God's order. There should be a mass slaughter followed by a rebirth of maybe like 4-6 gods, and no more, with less changes to the Gods. I think 3 is too few and too easy to partition into "pro-life, pro-death, fence-sit" or what have you. 6 gods is a good number, you can have 3 evil, 3 good, or 2/2/2, or what have you. You could also do 5 Gods if you want to do something like 2/1/2 or uneven sides, but uneven sides might lead to even more complaining.
  • HavenHaven World Burner Flight SchoolMember Posts: 2,385 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2012

    Hadoryu said:
    Holy Wars will never work because there are too many Gods and too few players. You are guaranteed to always be putting vastly unequal forces against each other and PK based conflict always goes to the way of the superior PK force, no matter how many 'equalizing' measures you put in. Order sizes are wildly mismatched, mostly because of the frivolous (ridiculously so) nature of Gods.

    So just give up!

    There, glad I saved you so much trouble.

    Edit: While I agree with your assessment, there's nothing wrong with theory-crafting and discussion until the issue gets addressed. It's my belief that if we, the players, pool together and make a decent conflict mechanic/system that fits Aetolia then maybe the Admin will use/take from it further down the road when they're ready to address the Order system. It would certainly help lighten their load at the very least as we argue over the kinks and stuff.
    ¤ Si vis pacem, para bellum. ¤
    Someone powerful says, "We're going to have to delete you."
  • CamilleCamille Member Posts: 50 ✭✭
    I came into this thread and read the very last post and only the very last post now everyone listen to me.

    I think a way to solve the ratio of Gods to players would be to have organizations that are tied to several divines and have denominations that follow one divine devotedly, while all members of that organization can generally agree on the tenets of each Divine in its little...pantheon, if you will. I haven't been back in Aetolia to understand the names and realms of all the Gods, so I'll make some up.

    Like-minded individuals who recognizes the One True Pastime of Burning Villages

    Worshippers of:

    Laresh, Goddess of Smouldering Ashes
    Vintus, King of the Dying Children
    Panti, Harvester of the Unjustly Dead
    Sprog, Demon of Mischief
    Skrillex, Patron of the Edgy Teenager

    And so you'd have Skrillexian Jiha monks, Pantean Jiha monks, and Lareshian Jiha monks, etc, but all can agree that burning villages is goddamn awesome.

    I think that might make for some interesting political intrigue if implemented, but there'd probably be problems implementing it. Just my idea. If only we had a forum for such things.

    My avatar is not representative of how I or my character look.
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