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Some Thoughts on Improving the game

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With all the talk of new War Clan mechanics and after reading some other suggestions that have been put forward I jotted down a few of my own thoughts on how I think the game can be improved.

Please forgive me if they seem a bit haphazard, and I do not believe all my thoughts would be workable or not have flaws that could be exploited. They are just my thoughts so please reply constructively and not just dismiss them outright. A lot of it would have to be fleshed out further but I am sure some of them may be applicable to the new mechanics they are currently discussing so I am posting it now.


All ports are capturable

Clans can capture ports

Clans belong to nations and cannot fight clans from same nation (no civil war)

Port battles are between clans of different nations, clan indicates intention to attack by some mechanism (maybe flag, maybe hostility build up some way) at time of attack the attacking PB fleet sails from a clan port (or other nation port for clan without port) PB fleet has special designation and can only attack and be attacked by defending clan. (maybe allow other clans/pirates to be brought in to assist, sort of mercenaries). As the PB fleet is fixed from when it sails to attack they could be limited in size by BR and have limits on classes of ships.

PORTS – all ports apart from nation capital region start out as neutral. All ports can be captured individually. Ports start off at level 1 and need to be built up (need to decide maximum town level). National capitals have abundance of basic building materials (e.g. Oak, Iron, Stone). Once a clan claims a neutral port the port now flies the flag of that nation, the clan can start developing the port using building materials shipped in. Shallow water ports cannot reach maximum level.

Various buildings can be constructed to level up the town. Things like dockyards for shipbuilding are not built by individual players but by the clan owning the port. The clan builds the dockyard and any crafter of that nation can use it. Dockyards will still have different levels for production of different ships. The level of the town limits the level of the dockyard i.e. a level one town can only have a basic ship yard. Only maximum level towns can have dockyards building first rates. Maximum level should be difficult to reach, by needing lots of resources and lots of upkeep. Can have more than 3 levels of dockyards allowing ports at a level below maximum to build 2nd and 3rd rates. The difficulty in reaching these levels could dictate the availability of such ships.

Forts require to be constructed up to a maximum number (maybe allow positions of forts to be decided by clan building them). Forts have to be built and gunned up. Upgraded forts could have options like heated shot.

Port battles sizes are determined by the level of the port, with level 1 ports only having maybe a maximum of 10 vs 10 (or XXX BR vs XXX BR)and the maximum level port having 25 vs 25.

When a port is captured the attackers have the option of sacking the port which reduces the port back to level 1 and the port becomes neutral again, or they can take control of the port with the structures within requiring repair. Building and repair takes time, so basically you provide the materials and once all materials are in place it takes XX amount of time to build or repair. This could allow a quick counter attack before the port is up to full strength again. Port will probably drop some levels due to the attack and damages.

The port owners decide what the port produces within the limits of what is available in that port e.g. Port Morant has available silver, teak, cotton, the owning clan decide how much of each is produced by building mines or plantations (similar to production buildings now). Each port has a certain limit on maximum number of buildings possible and these are tied into the port reaching maximum level. The production of resources provides the items to the open market, so anyone with access to that port can buy them. Prices could be made to vary based on the amount in stock starting with a minimum price. Port owner could switch on and off production to control stock supply.

The owning clan can set tax rates between certain limits and this is applied to all purchases. Maybe towns could have a dissatisfaction index partly affected by tax where the higher the tax the higher the dissatisfaction and consequently the lower the production of resources. Dissatisfaction could also be linked to how many players of the owning clan or nation are sunk within certain radius of the port. (could also do it with NPC, but this may allow too much griefing of a clans port). The idea with taxes is to try and force the owning clan to keep them low, while allowing short periods of high taxes to quickly build funds.

All buildings have a weekly upkeep which must be paid by the owning clan. All upkeep is totalled to a weekly upkeep for that port. If upkeep is not paid a random structure or building could be lost due to local riot or production reduced. Continued lack of upkeep will require buildings to be repaired or rebuilt and eventually the port starts losing levels and eventually can go back to level 1.

Port owners can set a 3 hour window during which they can be attacked. A clan can attack only one port at a time. Maybe have to set the maximum number of attacks that can be arranged against a clan at a time i.e. a single clan should not have to face too many battles at the same time. This could be based on clan size so smaller clans are not overrun by bigger ones. Port Battles can take place round the clock within the limits of maintenance and the times set by defenders. With so many ports up for grabs I am sure people will always be able to find action in their own time zone.

PIRATES – Not too sure on pirate mechanics, I am sure people that enjoy playing pirates can come up with some good suggestions. My thinking is that playing pirate should be hard mode, the reason for this is that pirate faction has the ability to attract more players to it due to the romantic notion of pirates portrayed in Hollywood films and this can distort their numbers in relation to history. It should not be easy to play a pirate, they should have some unique abilities but not be too attractive for the average player.

I do like the ideas of Outlaws and Privateers. Outlaws could be small clans able to attack anyone, raid shipping etc, while Privateers can operate under letters of marque to work for a nation (or a clan). Outlaws can become Privateers by obtaining a letter of marque.

Pirate clans should probably be limited in size to maybe a maximum of XX members, just so they cannot be as powerful as a national clan.

Pirates cannot own ports but they can raid and sack ports up to a certain level. (it would not be logical to allow pirates sack top rate ports in first rates).

Pirates could be limited to certain classes of ships.

Pirates could have an infamy system where bounties build up on them in various nations depending on how many of that nations players they sank (the infamy should build up based on the type of battles and BR involved, i.e. zero infamy for sinking cutters to maximum infamy for sinking a first rate in a cutter if you can), captures wouldn’t count to avoid the obvious exploits. Bounties would be paid by your nation i.e. if you are British and you sink a pirate you get paid the British nation bounty. Once a bounty has been paid the pirate infamy is reset for that nation and can then start to build up again. Bounties should not be excessively large to avoid abuse of the system but large enough to make them interesting.

FREETOWNS – these should be neutral ports and trading hubs that any nation can use. You cannot have an outpost in a neutral town. Maybe area around neutral town is a no fight zone (size of area to be decided).

PORT BATTLES – Size of port battle is decided by the size of town with the still included limitations of shallow and deep water. The smaller the town the smaller the battle (eventual sizes can be decided) this allows smaller clans take and hold smaller towns as long as they do not develop the port bigger than what they can defend.

Only the owning clan and attacking clan can participate in the actual port battle. (still not sure about allowing mercenary or allied clans help screen as this can lead to too big an advantage for bigger nations).

The attackers have to form their port battle fleet in their clan port or home nation port if they do not own a port. (if they do own a port they must form there, this is to stop big clans from quickly snapping up critical ports spread out across the map). As a clan once you own a port that is where you must start your operations from.

If the battle limits are set by BR then the attackers and defenders decide which ships they want up to the maximum BR, this will allow for flexible battle fleets with different tactics. Once a port battle fleet sets out it can only be attacked by the defending clans forces. Normal RoE will apply for tagging with screeners etc. The attacking force cannot decide to attack other targets.

At the end of the port battle the same protections still apply to allow the remains of the attacking force return to their home port if they were unsuccessful. They can still be chased by the defending clan.

If they are successful in winning the port battle then they have to repair the port. The port is not open to attack for a certain amount of time to allow the new owners settle in.

The defeated port owner has similar amount of time as present to evacuate their ships and possessions from the port.

As ports gain higher levels the BR for the battles increases and thus the range of ships that are viable increases. Maybe there could be something like 10 levels of ports for deep water and 5 or 6 for shallow water. I’m sure people can come up with some viable limits for different port battles culminating in the ultimate maximum size port battle.

ECONOMY – All crafting base materials are produced from the owned ports and players can alter the amounts depending on what buildings they construct. The base resources availability should be seeded round the map with some historical reference but not so that any area is totally devoid of a needed resource.

Control of rare resources should be possible but very difficult to have absolute control.

There needs to be a system in place that makes it worthwhile for traders to transport goods around the map.

I’m not an economist, but I am sure people can think of some good ideas for the economy so it is balanced and inflation does not run riot. I would like to see an economy based solely on goods manufactured in game rather than random trade goods that appear in ports. Maybe a system that relies on interdependence between ports, so that a single port on its own cannot make everything but needs imports from other ports.


National Capitals – I think I would be in favour of national capital regions (i.e. the capital and a few ports round it) being non-PvP zones to allow new players time to learn the game mechanics. PvE Missions in these zones could be limited to the first few ranks and although you can still do missions in these regions at higher ranks you would stop earning XP and gold from them but still be able to use them for training.

National capital regions would only produce the base port building materials and nothing else. They can only produce 6th and 7th rates in the national dockyard that crafters can use.

Basically they would become safe regions to start from and learn the game, but have little significance after that apart from being a ready supply of base building materials.


HOSTILITY – Maybe we could have a system of hostility similar to what we have now but one that is generated slower. Hostility is still generated on a regional basis and once hostility has reached 100% in a region, the region becomes vulnerable to port battles. The port battles can then happen using the flag mechanic with maybe 30 minutes notice that a flag has been pulled.

With a region at 100% hostility from PvP the hostility will remain at 100% unless it is reduced by PvP, and all the time it remains at 100% the ports within are open to attack flags being pulled. To stop the abuse of a region being held at 100% without any intention to attack and no nation players entering the area to allow reduction, PvP hostility could be wiped after maybe 3 days at 100%.

Hostility generation via AI should be very slow and hostility generated this way should decay relatively quickly. PvP hostility does not decay and can only be reduced by PvP. You should not be able to flip a region solely by PvE in one day, this is to give enough warning that a region is liable to attack. PvP hostility can flip a region quickly.

To encourage PvP in an area a clan wishing to attack a port in that area could post a mission that people of the same nation can take. This could conversely create a mission in the opposing nation stating that there are rumours of hostility build-up in a region by a certain nation and that national players should head there and defend. The rewards for the attacking nation should be paid by the clan generating the hostility mission while the defenders are just paid from their nation like normal missions. The missions should reward PvP kills only.


FOR SOLO & NON-CLAN PLAYERS – For people not interested in RvR but just wanting to PvP there could be missions as stated earlier in the hostility section that they could take to assist their nations expansion or defence.

They still have the option to just go raiding enemy nations traders and warships or go pirate hunting for the bounties.


These are just some thoughts, I hope people find them interesting or expand on them. Please also let me know what wouldnt work and why.

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