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As I see it there is a big problem dividing the player base and degrading gameplay quality for all involved, especially those involved in RvR. That problem is the conflict of interest between solo players and clan members. We want to make ports and RVR meaningful. However any advantage or benefit given to a clan member for owning a port inherently gives them an advantage of a solo player who can’t capture ports, and in our current system clan members and solo players play alongside each other in direct competition. My solution is to stop beating around the bush and separate solos/non-clan players and clan players while still allowing cooperation between them. While I recognize that RvR is somewhat on hold while the UI and other mechanics are worked out, it is important to continue civil discussions of what a good system is and if we don’t put out our suggestions/desires we can’t complain if we don’t get what we want. Also spoilers are confusing, privateers is kinda hidden inside pirates. Even if changes aren’t going to happen in the short term, we need to talk and find decide what changes we want when they do start happening. I also recognize that there have been a lot of threads on this subject but considering the size and complexity of this suggestion I feel deserves its own topic, and considering how it includes pirates, privateers, clans, and big changes to RvR, ports, open world AI, etc it doesn’t quite fit with those topics either. It carries similar elements to topics proposed by numerous other people, including Banished Privateers merchant ships, and I know Christendom has campaigned for giving clans a lot more control over their ports. Basically, this is an idea or model designed to work as a compromise that improves gameplay for all players making for more interesting RvR and, as opposed to the very one-sided suggestions frequently thrown around, introduce gameplay styles/niches that fit solo players as well. At the very least, this is an interesting thought experiment. It would make alts basically useless, or at least easy to catch and stop, it would give clans a real reason to take/protect ports, and it would make inter clan relationships more important as they will depend on each other. Aside from that it would give solo players more interesting stuff to do and add pirates as a more realistic portrayal into the game. Not to mention no more derpy ass “flipping” Here we go. First of all, separate players into separate character types. National players (all in clans) They fight for their clan and to a lesser extent the nation, clans have total control over their ports (to be explained.) This also encompasses traders (vital to clans) Pirates: Ditch “pirate nation” it offers no unique game-play. New more realistic pirates, semi perma death, extreme risk extreme freedom. Infamy based progression system, reward for nationals for sinking a pirate is tied to their infamy + rewards posted by clans. (clans can see who is raiding their shipping and damaging their town (to be explained) Privateers (pirate who has taken letter of marque from a nation or national who has no clan. Privateers have no official clan affiliation, but cooperate and work with clans to help one or more nations and contribute to RvR in ways to be explained below) Rework towns, clans, RVR, and open world AI. Basically, because non-clan affiliated players have a niche (privateering and piracy) clans can get total control over their captured towns. This control includes entry rights, IE what clans or privateers are allowed entry. It also includes who can use clan amenities like repairing, the port’s market, docking ships, placing contracts, and docking fees as Christendom suggested. They can also decide who can build or craft ships there, importantly whether privateers can enter. Also of note there could be two types of entry allowance/denial. Players/clans could be permanently whitelisted or given temporary entry permits. For instance, if a clan tasked a trader from another clan with bringing in a shipment of goods but they aren’t comfortable giving that clan permanent access, they offer him a temporary whitelist. Another option would be replacing the “enter X” button with a “request entry to X” button. If a player is whitelisted, they enter like normal. If not, clan officers would receive a request and can grant, ignore, or openly deny said request. (possible different officer positions with different tasks such as economy, port security, merchant defense, admiral, etc.) They also control economic factors for their ports. Ports don’t just sit there, they are integral to open world trading and they are reliant on it. They provide their clan with income, but this income is not fixed nor guaranteed. A clan’s income comes from trade with other clans, or taxes on that trade. The best example I can think of on the spot is mount and blade “prosperity.” All ports consume basic supplies like food supplies, iron, woods, etc. However, ports also have special needs and abilities just like currently. Mines, forests, farmland, or industrial capability, special industries, etc. They also need all the resources to supply and operate those industries. These demands must be fulfilled by traders, AI or player. Towns could automatically generate and send AI ships to supply the town, by purchasing those goods from towns that produce them and clans can micro manage this to the extent they want. These ships would replace current open world AI, which is just there for boring, no risk grinding as is. Resources like food supplies and iron will be available nearby and can be done with AI with high success, but more rare resources like gunpowder or rare wood types require long trading runs during which and AI would be almost certain to be intercepted by pirates, privateers, or hostile clans/nations. An AI supply ship would, upon being hailed in the OW, reveal its starting point and destination, allowing clans and privateers to target their attacks to weaken enemy ports. These missions would be done by player traders, often with clan escorts. Ports could supply themselves with some food supplies by fishing, (interesting way to add fishing vessels to the game) but these fishing fleets would be vulnerable if unprotected. (another thing for pirates to do besides raiding merchants and possibly smuggling contraband) The fights to protect and attack shipping would lead to pvp. In many cases it may be more important to ensure the escape of the merchant vessel or secure its demise than to keep your ship. Captains will be less likely to flee these battles, and if they do this will still be a victory for the attacking clan even if they sink no enemy players: They got the enemy shipping and weakened their infrastructure. Clans would be able to make trade deals with other clans to ensure steady supply of resources and prevent backstabbing and scumbaggery. (If a nearby clan was bribed by “foreign interest groups” to suddenly pull the plug on resources for a different clan without any warning it could seriously screw over that clan. Mutually agreed upon trade agreements that can’t be backed out of without warning would stabilize trade and increase prosperity (kinda like in real life.) Town prosperity, income, and defensive strength would be tied to these economic factors, and taxes. A town that gets 100% of supplies it needs while safely selling 100% of its produce with a low tax rate will have a high prosperity (1 to 100 or whatever scale is used). Ports with higher prosperity: · Provide higher income to the clan Are harder to take. The current open world AI really wouldn’t be missed. Totally rework pirates and add privateers. What I, a largely solo player, would be most excited about! Pirates as is are just another nation… one of 11? 10? A lot. Anyway, they are nothing unique. This at the same time as there are two problems: Lack of gameplay niches for solo players and complete lack of representation of actual pirates: outlaws and privateers which were important at that time. So important that controlling them was a key reason for the construction of the US navy’s six original frigates including the famous USS constitution. In fact, the charter to build these frigates included a clause immedidately scrapping the ships’ construction should the threat of piracy be eliminated through a peace treaty with the barbary states. (If Wikipedia is to be believed) Here is how pirates could work.