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It is becoming very apparent with the current Development Poll that diplomacy and (more importantly) piracy war by far the mot popular aspect of the game that the community at large feels needs to be addressed. While on somewhat of a tangent, I believe that the current "Surrender" and "Capture" mechanics are somewhat lacking, and proper implementation could very well assist in starting to separate pirates and nationals in gameplay- both long and short-term.

 

The Surrender Mechanic

 

Now I've only ever resorted to using the Surrender button once (When it comes down to it, I prefer to go out in a figurative blaze of glory, or a more literal blaze caused by a shot in the magazine). I was in a basic cutter, carrying nothing. I think I lost a durability. I'm not sure if my opponent receive anything, be it gold, XP, or otherwise.

 

Now I believe Surrender should be a viable option, however it should have some different possible outcomes. PotBS, when a player surrendered, the player who was surrendering was given an option of how much of their cargo they would surrender (I found this rather amusing, imagining the banter between captains: "Stop shooting! We surrender! Please don't sink me!...But I'm only giving you 25 percent of my cargo!). This was somewhat viable, as the attacker would most likely receive more booty than they would had they simply sunk the ship (if they intended to capture it, there was little incentive to accept a surrender). However, I feel the choice of mercy should not go to the attacker, not the one surrendering.

 

A player can offer to surrender, and when they do, the attacker would be given a list of options on how to handle the surrender

  • A: Ignore the Surrender ("Damnation seize my soul if I give you quarter, or take any from you!")
  • B: Accept the Surrender; commandeer(plunder) goods/repair kits/modules. Surrendering player is allowed to leave, no durability lost.
  • C: Accept the Surrender; Commandeer Ship. Player is effectively "Sunk", loses one durability. Player loses all goods, modules, etc. The Attacker takes the ship as though they had boarded it. 
  • D: Accept Surrender; show mercy. Surrendering player is allowed to leave with everything in tact; no cargo or durability lost. 

The last 3 options could have further implications should a sort of reputation system be implemented: showing mercy would garner a large amount of good reputation. 

 

Now, I'm not one to sing PotBS's praises. Like, ever. However what I did find interesting/amusing, was that when someone offered a surrender, the Attacker could accept the surrender, receive the loot from it, and be able to go back on their word and still sink the player. This was something that seemed like the most piratey: "Ok, we accept your surrender, you can go...Lolz, I lied"

Now, as much as I loved the piratiness of it, I seriously believe this is not how it should be implemented here. It is far too susceptible to grief and trolling. 

 

The Capture Mechanic: "Send to Admiralty"

  1. The ability to "capture" and "take command" of a ship is reserved solely for pirates. Captured ships have one durability, and retain all the characteristics and permanent modules of the ship that was captured. - 1/2 way there, 
  2. When a ship is captured, the quality of the ship and permanent modules are all degraded.
  3. Pirates can use resources to "craft" an extra durability for a captured ship (obviously the resources needed to be equal to what is needed to have build a ship of equal quality from scratch, then adjusted based on how much durability is to be added. Example: if ship A, of Fine quality needs 50 planks to be built with 5 durability, then crafting 1 durability for it once it is captured requires only 10 planks. refilling durability in this manner can only be done by pirates. Similarly, pirates can use resources to upgrade the quality of ships and modules

The reasoning behind this is simple: the pirates need to be weened off of mass producing ships the same way that the Nations build ships. At first, pirates would still be able to produce all ships. However this mechanic would allow them an alternate means of acquiring ships, thus pulling them away from the shipyard and out to sea to plunder, where they belong. While pirates should eventually have limitations on what ships they can build, pirates should have the ability to capture any and all ships. 
NOTE: I do not think pirates should "want" to sail large lineships, however until mechanics change that shift pirate gameplay focus to smaller ships, they should not be limited in the ships they can command.

 

Nationals send captured ships to Admiralty- The Nations' only option for acquiring new ships should be through production and trade. They should not be able to commandeer other ships. Any ships they capture should be sent to the Admiralty, at which point the player will receive one (or be given a choice)  of a number of possible rewards, all based on the quality, size, rank, etc. of the ship captured. Such rewards could be - 1/2 there, As of Patch 9.7, all NPC ships are sent to admiralty. 

  • Reputation
  • Resources
  • Sums of Gold
  • Medium-High Grade Modules (Only temporary? Only permanent?)
  • Ship Tokens: tokens to be traded for a free ship of medium-high quality. (Example: 5 tokens gets you a Privateer, 500 gets you a Victory). Tokens can vary in grade: Token of Service- to be traded for rank 7-6 vessels (given for capture of ships of similar rank), Token of Valor- to be traded for Rank 2-1 ships. 

Now why this difference? Because there needs to be some give-and-take here; there needs to start being some differences between pirates and Nationals that don't simply limit one or the other. Instead this will place some level on restriction on both, while providing some sort of trade-off.

 

A pirate can easily capture any ship, but that ship would end up being of a lesser quality due to it being captured. Pirates can still field exceptional ships, but they must do so via upgrading captured ones. Whereas Nationals would have the ability to purchase high grade ships with Tokens, essentially for free, but would have to capture a large number of ships of the same quality to be able to do so. 

 

~Cheers

Edited by William the Drake
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Now, I'm not one to sing PotBS's praises. Like, ever. However what I did find interesting/amusing, was that when someone offered a surrender, the Attacker could accept the surrender, receive the loot from it, and be able to go back on their word and still sink the player. This was something that seemed like the most piratey: "Ok, we accept your surrender, you can go...Lolz, I lied"

Now, as much as I loved the piratiness of it, I seriously believe this is not how it should be implemented here. It is far too susceptible to grief and trolling. 

 

If the surrender aspect could be implemented as an end-battle screen, and the option is given to set the ship free, then the invisibility and invulnerability should give the victim a chance to get away and not be trolled by the attacker.  Possibly there could be an additional invisibility time if an option such as that occurs, to prevent a gang of griefers from harassing one player over and over.

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If the surrender aspect could be implemented as an end-battle screen, and the option is given to set the ship free, then the invisibility and invulnerability should give the victim a chance to get away and not be trolled by the attacker.  Possibly there could be an additional invisibility time if an option such as that occurs, to prevent a gang of griefers from harassing one player over and over.

 

I meant that when they offered a surrender and the surrender was accepted, the players would not be automatically taken out of the combat instance. So in PotBS, one could accept a surrender and sink the person in the same instance, no re-tagging required. 

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I meant that when they offered a surrender and the surrender was accepted, the players would not be automatically taken out of the combat instance. So in PotBS, one could accept a surrender and sink the person in the same instance, no re-tagging required. 

 

 

Then why have surrender at all if you plan to sink em anyway?

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I quite like the suggestions about surrender mechanics. I would however suggest a few changes to them:

 

Surrendering side should have the option to offer a Surrender with conditions which could be either ignored or accepted by the other side. Accepting the surrender with conditions would leave out the option of Commandeering the ship but commandeering cargo and mercy would still be available options.

 

Another offer of surrender would be Unconditional surrender which could NOT be ignored by the other side and would leave open all the options of commandeering ship, cargo or showing mercy as the winner pleases.

 

Don't think even these addition would much increase the amount of surrendering in the game but if some sort of persistent crew mechanic is introduced then maybe there would be a reason to surrender over sinking.

 

edit. I don't know if any kind of reputation system beyond your actual reputation on the server would be much use or help. I have never seen an game mechanic driven reputation system that would have had any correlation with reality and that couldn't be exploited. For example, lets say a player uses all his time attacking new players doing missions in basic cutters and shows them mercy so on the paper he would have a great reputation of fair and merciful pirate but it could not be farther from the truth.

Edited by Marcomies
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Then why have surrender at all if you plan to sink em anyway?

 

That's the point: In PotBS, you could be [somewhat of] a troll by accepting the surrender (thus accepting the loot offered for the surrender) and then sink the other player regardless. Here it should be done automatically: if you accept the player's surrender, they are immediately taken out of the battle. 

 

 

edit. I don't know if any kind of reputation system beyond your actual reputation on the server would be much use or help. I have never seen an game mechanic driven reputation system that would have had any correlation with reality and that couldn't be exploited. For example, lets say a player uses all his time attacking new players doing missions in basic cutters and shows them mercy so on the paper he would have a great reputation of fair and merciful pirate but it could not be farther from the truth.

 

Reputation and bounty systems have been discussed for a while here. I hope that development of International relations (war & peace mechanics) will facilitate a need for some of these.

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