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Anolytic

Pirate Infestations

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...of unmaintained ports.

 

Let’s face it. We’re not getting raids. Nor is black-on-black likely to come back as a RoE.

But pirates should have some unique mechanic that distinguishes them from other nations without giving them an advantage or disrupting gameplay for the general populace.

Here’s my on-the-spot idea for a pirate mechanic that I think would not be too much work to implement. I would welcome some input as to its viability or improvement.

Pirate Infestation of Ports

I’m going to try to explain my idea as simple and brief as I can.

Essentially it’s this:

Ports that are left unused, unvisited and unprotected by their national owners can become infested by pirates. To begin with this is just a stat, not an infestation of actual pirate players. If the pirate infestation reaches too high, a pirate clan can get the opportunity to attack that port, from Mortimer Town regardless of frontlines and regions and in any part of the map. If they win, they get a position behind enemy lines, to raid commerce and do other pirate activities. It gets an extra long cooldown before it is attackable again by other nations, but potentially it would not be possible to take hostility missions from pirate infested towns. On the other hand, the owning pirate clan gets a significantly boosted income from the pirate infested town, deriving from privateering and pirate activities like gambling, whoring and other debauchery in the port. 

What is addressed:

Potentially, this mechanic would work to counter the cases of inactive clans holding ports behind frontlines because they never get attacked. Especially with regional conquest it is going to become a problem that dependent ports in a county will be held by clans that eventually disappear or go inactive, but nobody can take over the port. In the past this has also happened to important ports that were held for long times by clans that were not at all playing anymore. It would also mean that clans have to take care also of their less valuable ports and ports in the periphery, or risk loosing them to pirate infestations.

How it would work:

I am open to suggestions for how this mechanic could work, but I will give an outline of how I imagine it.

Ports all have a stat of pirate infestation. From 0-100%. This stat can only be seen by the owning clan and clans allied to the owner. Pirate infestation increases with various factors, such as the port being unused. If it is free-for-all pirate infestation grows faster. If investments are active in the port infestation grows slower. When investments are made infestation goes down. Members of the owning clan trading to or from the port reduces infestation significantly. Generally infestations grow very slow, but if a port is not visited by the owning nation for a long time (weeks) it starts growing fast. If barely any members/officers log into the clan for a prolonged time, their ports all start growing infestations faster.

If a port gets higher than 85% pirate infestation, then it can be attacked by a pirate clan and taken by them. 

But since only clans and their allies can see infestations in their own ports, pirate clans cannot know what ports have a high enough infestation level to be attackable unless they have a spy or a traitor in place to let them know.

Instead pirate clans can, in Mortimer Town, pay for expeditions to be made to any port on the map. If the expedition they choose is for a port that has a low infestation level, then the money they invest is lost. If the expedition is for a port with a high infestation level - 85% or higher - then their expedition will infiltrate the city and increase the infestation rate to 100% and also send word back to the pirate clan that the port is ripe for attack and they will be able to take hostility missions for the port within the next 5 days.

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Very interesting...and as a Pirate, I like it.  It seems to be heavily weighted towards just the pirates though.  The owning nation doesn't get much out of it other than a thorn in their side. 

8 minutes ago, Anolytic said:

But since only clans and their allies can see infestations in their own ports, pirate clans cannot know what ports have a high enough infestation level to be attackable unless they have a spy or a traitor in place to let them know.

Could not anyone in a trader sail into the port and look at a tab with infestation percentage on it?

 

8 minutes ago, Anolytic said:

increase the infestation rate to 100% and also send word back to the pirate clan that the port is ripe for attack and they will be able to take hostility missions for the port within the next 5 days.

If infestation reached 100%, I would say that no hostility is necessary and the PB can be set.  Does the PB defence use bots or must the defending nation muster a defence force?

Edited by Angus MacDuff

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1 minute ago, Angus MacDuff said:

The owning nation doesn't get much out of it other than a thorn in their side. 

For the owning nation it means they have to maintain their ports, keep their clans active and working together, and they should not hold more ports than they can actually use and visit with some regularity.

2 minutes ago, Angus MacDuff said:

Could not anyone in a trader sail into the port and look at a tab with infestation percentage on it?

I would prefer if it required some guesswork and/or intel so that it was actually a risky investment for pirates to probe a port. The profit should be great for capturing and holding a pirate infested port, but failed expeditions should also come at some expense so that they cannot probe all ports all times, or just take a traders lynx to find a sure target.

4 minutes ago, Angus MacDuff said:

If infestation reached 100%, I would say that no hostility is necessary and the PB can be set.  Does the PB defence use bots or must the defending nation muster a defence force?

I considered that as well. The only problem I would say then is the timing of the PB. Because unmaintained ports are unlikely to have a timer. It would be meaningless if the pirate clan doing the probing ended up with a PB at a time they could not be there. And I forgot to mention that the expeditions should take 24 hours (or even 48) before returning an answer, and only one expedition can be active per clan at a time.

About defence. I obviously don't want this to be a PvE-feature, so yes, the nation can defend. But if the owning clan is inactive, then it could be a problem to get on their friendlist and join the PB. Another reason why hostility missions should be needed to prepare the attack. It allows some warning and some chance to push the pirates back.

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i feel calling it an infestation is not the right terminology to use. they aren't a disease or a swarm of alien creatures.

I'd call it "corruption." they corrupt the stable atmosphere and unhinge the balance of power.

Edited by Teutonic
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An incursion by pirates for personal gain sounds like something pirates would try; sneaky, disruptive, opportunistic.

I would love to see (ad nauseam) pirate specific mechanics in play. For starters, they alone should be the only and truly hardcore faction. I'll give the dev's the benefit of the doubt that they will eventually address the pirate issue. I remember reading on the forum some time ago that they would do that.

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1 hour ago, Anolytic said:

Pirate Infestation of Ports

Pirate mechanics like these can go very far to revitalizing this game :) I say this as a non-pirate player who would be very, very happy to see this bring masses of varied, strategic content to the game.

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