Mage v Knight Balance, Revisited

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nemovonfish
Posts: 22
Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2020 1:47 am
Discord Handle: NvF

Tue Oct 20, 2020 11:31 pm

I don't think making people choose between a mundane guild and a mage guild is a good idea - that's making people choose between mageRP and normal RP. Same problem the Brotherhood has right now - anyone not in a guild is immediately suspicious, when they should be able to use legitimate guilds as a cover. If a mage guild is implemented, it CANNOT be mutually exclusive with other guilds, or it's worthless.

Geras
Posts: 978
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 8:50 pm

Tue Oct 20, 2020 11:51 pm

Agreed, though that's why I'm suggesting more of a dedicated sanctuary/hidey hole than an actual guild.

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galaxgal
Posts: 170
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:32 pm

Wed Oct 21, 2020 12:25 am

I know this is just trying to shoot the moon, but this makes me wish there could be a review of dual guilding.

With the pbase so small, making every character hyperspecialize not only limits covert players, but means it's really hard to cover all of the "essential services" ingame like Merchanting and medicine and Order-ing.

Geras
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Wed Oct 21, 2020 12:38 am

Dual overt guilding never made sense to me (though that would may need to be reviewed due to the size of the pbase as you mention), but for the Brotherhood I see no downside in allowing dual guilding if they're kept out of the Reeves still.

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galaxgal
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Wed Oct 21, 2020 12:49 am

Starstarfish wrote:
Tue Oct 20, 2020 10:31 pm
And it seems to perpetually cycle to the idea that -other mages- should be the ones doing these things or that someone else will.
I don't know why the aversion to any kind of support for Mages is so strong here.

I have tried to kickstart this across multiple characters now. It does not happen for all the reasons I have iterated prior:
  • The Astral plane is mega unwieldy with a small pbase.
  • Players are averse to the extreme risk vs. slow gains for magic learning.
  • Most of the prospective joiners are newbie players who get rapidly caught and killed.
  • There's only so much you can do to help on unestablished characters with one element at 'Proficient'.
  • Even if I stopped playing every other MUD or game just to focus on helping mage RP on-call, people would still be high and dry because I need to sleep, and I'd still be idle a lot of the time, and I still couldn't teach everything they needed for literal OOC years.
This is not a problem we mage players can bootstrap ourselves out of. The code surrounding magic seemed fine because for years, we had mage players who were basically unicorns propping the whole thing up, and those mage players had coded support systems and QoL that no longer exist to get to where they were.

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LANS
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Wed Oct 21, 2020 1:04 pm

Taunya wrote:
Mon Oct 19, 2020 3:45 am
On wax balls, they're a rare restock only available when Piety is high. It took me RL months to acquire a wax ball on Prisca, who was often targeted by spoopy folk. It cost 1500 silver when one was finally available, so it's not like they're handed out like candy. While they technically can be crafted, I've never actually seen it happen as they require mage ash to craft, which the Order keeps a tight grip on. Mage ash is likewise a rare restock or created in small quantities by burning an legitimate witch, and is usually needed more for other things.
Speaking from the receiving end of things, the wax ball didn't seem to offer much help in the end.
Respectuflly: this is inaccurate. Wax balls are very easy to obtain, they are very affordable, and are very plentiful. Theoretically I could burn money until every active PC has one. Of course, I won't, because I like the Order having a chokehold on these items.

I see all good points here. Not a mage guild, I think it's a bad idea that has been scratched out too many times.
I see less magical activity overall. I patrol a lot, pay attention to players (activities, possessions, mannerisms), have informants, etc. And I see that there are less magical items and phenomena, less suspicious activity (I'm the only militant Order member active, though). Even extrapolating all that I can't perceive, of course. It also shows in my much lesser ratio of arrests compared to 2019.
I think this is a great thread for staff to consider.

Puciek
Posts: 417
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2013 6:51 pm

Thu Oct 22, 2020 8:39 am

mystry wrote:
Tue Oct 20, 2020 11:17 pm
I believe that it's a perception that the danger level is just too high. Unless you know for a fact who the other mage is, and you know they won't betray you, there's little to incentivize someone to seek out another mage. Having an actual organized (and obviously covert) guild or something similar might mitigate that, particularly when interacting with the GLs of that guild, as I think I've read in policy somewhere that GLs must be loyal to the guild they are in.
Manus was an actual guild with impenetrable tower, and it went through removal and reintroduction cycle. And every single time this has happened, sooner or later, vast majority of magery RP was only happening within that tower, where there was absolutely no risk for the mages in mind, or benefit for the population at large. Even without that support such "safe places" can and have been created, but at least they are not completely immune from outside world.
Blake Evernight tells you, "You, Sir, won my heart today. Are you single?"

Geras
Posts: 978
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 8:50 pm

Thu Oct 22, 2020 12:52 pm

So what's the solution Puciek? I agree that that was a real problem but if the alternative is no mage RP at all...

Puciek
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Thu Oct 22, 2020 1:47 pm

Geras wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 12:52 pm
So what's the solution Puciek? I agree that that was a real problem but if the alternative is no mage RP at all...
Some of the most prolific and game-wide impacting mages as far as I remember were from them manus-off "eras", so I don't think that's the core of the problem. In the end it's relatively easy to have a safe meeting/hiding spot with being able to get covert phomes with unorthodox entries, and then using some magery to not even leave tracks leading to it. Honestly, I don't think the hiding place is not the issue, though now if it gets discovered at least it can be breached with enough effort, while with manus tower it just (mostly) didn't matter.

Just to outline on the manus tower issue, when I started playing TI the mages were so dug up in the tower that they didn't even get back to applicants... most of the time. But the tower RP was going on in full swing. The isolation was really not great for the game.

Though a solution... It's a complicated subject but I guess I can rant a bit and maybe some of it will make sense.

There definitely is a problem with secrecy of magery and it's signs. Not only among most trusted order members but given just how many people OOCly know magery, its very easy to become a "mage signs expert" icly, takes some flimsy excuse in the past. When I started with TI, with my first Knight, I remember how players (including knights) pushed against spreading definitive mage-knowledge icly, so as new orderite if you didn't experience most of the magery yourself, you wouldn't be able to instantly recognize it. So even if you OOCly may have know that "yep, this is magery" your PC wouldn't. Last time I dabbled into TI then even lowly Southside had magery-recognition-knowledge shoved down his throat, and not by an inquisitors, or knights. And then people were willing to ICly belive most insane theories (think rising from the death type of insane) with very little doubt or debate, because, well, mages right? I think that's one of the biggest factors of the lack of balance, where population relatively easily accepts the impossible (because mages) and steer their suspicions accordingly. Sometimes not even finding it as worthy writing a cnote because it's so easily acceptable to your pc that someone has risen from the dead.

And that kinda goes against the core of mages - they are supposed to be mysterious and operate something that for normal people is impossible to comprehend. They don't need to actually be able to burn down a village in order to be dangerous, the myth around them should be more than enough for anyone to flee in terror when a mage passes through with a flame burning out of their skull, or doing anything else creepy. Heck, I can't imagine why wouldn't most knights run for the hills when faced with a mage, you never know if he won't just snap his finger and horde of demons will appear and eat your alive. They don't because "mages - complete guide to what they can and cannot do" is passed along freely, whether people do it knowingly or not, that's what's going on. So instead of building the portrayal of scary mages who with raise of a brow can level mountains we are building image of weaklings who need to fight with weapons and wear armor, otherwise they are relatively easy to beat. And when the mystery and myth is gone, well, mages really are not that powerful, and shouldn't be as that was causing a lot more of a problem when they were very dangerous in combat indeed, with mattack ignoring armor, and pretty powerful combat (direct and indirect) spells.

What that means in practice that for mages to thrive, there must be population of PCs that allows itself to be victims of the mages, and same applies to brotherhood and any other villain groups, that they require people willing to play along with those archetypes, not mostly unite against them. Or at least that's my 0.2$ on the matter.

That's my personal view at the core of the game. As a disclaimer I didn't play TI in few months, and then for year and a bit before, though I mostly stopped because the game is just too slow for me, and I do not have the big swats of time to do 3-5 hours scenes on even semi-regular basis, so I spend my time at RP games that are faster paced.
Blake Evernight tells you, "You, Sir, won my heart today. Are you single?"

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galaxgal
Posts: 170
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:32 pm

Thu Oct 22, 2020 2:37 pm

Puciek wrote:
Thu Oct 22, 2020 1:47 pm
Some of the most prolific and game-wide impacting mages as far as I remember were from them manus-off "eras", so I don't think that's the core of the problem. In the end it's relatively easy to have a safe meeting/hiding spot with being able to get covert phomes with unorthodox entries, and then using some magery to not even leave tracks leading to it. Honestly, I don't think the hiding place is not the issue, though now if it gets discovered at least it can be breached with enough effort, while with manus tower it just (mostly) didn't matter.
All of the most prolific Mages I can think of had access to teachers who had prior access to the Manus guild.

When I think of why a guild or 'org' could be useful what I think of is all the first-contact benefits:
There's a leader you can mail who always uses the same aliases.
There's a group you can message/note.
There's an implicit assumption the people in charge won't utterly snub you (as long as you're patient and polite) because they depend on Approval metrics.

The hideout is secondary; just having support for these systems is a big jump in helping people matchmake for the kind of RP or goal they want.

I agree also though. The fact that magic is so widely, widely known on both an OOC and IC level makes a lot of tricks mages can do wildly ineffective compared to when you don't know what to expect and need to treat them with caution.

I'm in the same boat though. I still log in but my ability to engage is very limited, so I spend more and more of my time in places where I can do something meaningful over my lunchbreak.

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