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[declined] Third Faction

For proposals that have been rejected.

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GenocideDevice
Posts: 19

[declined] Third Faction

Post#1 » Sun Oct 16, 2016 7:40 pm

Look, I know this has likely already come up, and realistically it's not really a possibility without a complete replatforming. But I think it's something that needs to be seriously considered if this is going to work on a permanent basis. So to that effect, there are two things I'd like to discuss to support a third faction. First I'd like to share a few words about systems theory, and then the laws of diminishing returns as it relates to nerfing/twinking and it's effect on griefing.

So lets talk about the problem in terms of systems theory. For a system to work it need to self balance. The current system works thusly. One faction begins to overpopulate a server. That faction begins to dominate. The other faction gets sick of losing and begin to leave for another server where their faction dominates. Eventually there's no competition and the game gets boring. Now that the game is boring, even players from the dominant faction begin to leave. Eventually there aren't enough players to support the game

What was already tried, and why it failed. During the last days of War, War came up with two options. A swing faction, and providing extra defensive support for the minority faction. The failure of these both is that it did not address the underlying issue of faction domination. The dominant faction would simply 'zerg' the swing faction to get it on their side, or in the few occasions when the minority faction won the right to use the swing faction, it really didn't amount to much help... cause... you know... zerg. With the case of defense bonuses in favor of the minority faction, there were only two options. The first is to provide bonuses such that only delay the inevitable. Your only other option is to provide bonuses that make taking keeps impossible. Either way, now the minority faction is permanently on the defensive because this does nothing to address the underlying issue of faction domination.

Now, the problem doesn't even end there. The big bonuses and loot comes from taking keeps and the war campaigns. Now the dominating faction not only has the zerg, it has the tier armor and weapons. This is clearly a huge balancing issue.

If it isn't clear why this is a problem let me make it bluntly clear. The more people quit, the less players, the less there is to do, the more people quit. And down the drain it goes. If you were a company, say, trying to make money on a business model, chasing off players with paying accounts -as there is literally no avenue to succeed- is a huge problem. The zerg is why War failed. Now compounding the issue with was tier armor. Tier three armor was so powerful a single tier 3 could take out five players of equal level. Now imagine them constantly zerging, wiping the floor with their enemies, then taking to the forums and telling everyone who just got their backsides handed to them "Learn to play noob." Would you want to play that game? Well, for thousands of paying subscribers, it would seem not. No one wants to put in the effort to learn to play their best, just to get steam rolled because the opposing players don't even need to use basic tactics. There was never any incentive to do anything but zerg. The only siege weapon you even needed was a battering ram, and on high volume days, not even that. There were times zerg rushes were so large they'd crash the serves. It's bad enough to be outnumbered 7 to 1, but when you're on your fist warlord gear and an entire squad completely outfitted in emperor gear comes charging at you, why would you want to keep playing?

So... why would a third faction change anything? I could use the example of Dark Age of Camelot as proof that a third faction causes natural balance, but let me describe why. Lets say you have one dominate faction, and a moderately sized faction, and a small faction. This is our worse case scenario. Each faction doesn't just have one battlefront. You now have three a piece. From the dominant faction's vantage point, they're living pretty large. They can comfortable attack either faction and likely win. But if we assume the worst, they'll attack the tiny third faction. It's the easiest play. However, doing so, they now expose their avenue of attack to the moderate faction. Now, from the moderate factions standpoint. Now that the dominant faction has played it's card, their odds of attacking the tiny faction or the dominant faction are about the same. They could go for the easy victory or the biggest prize. But again, lets assume the worst. Lets assume the attack the tiny faction for the easy victory. Now you have the problem that both the dominant and moderate faction want the same thing and this is a zero sum game. They can't both walk away with the prize. This leaves an avenue for the tiny faction to exploit. Now lets look at it from the vantage point of the tiny fact. They can either go purely on the defensive and hope the two larger factions tangle enough for them to exploit, or they can go on the offensive and attack the exposed front between the two larger factions. Either way, they can still play and it still matters what they do. They get to compete, and they get a shot at the loot.

In order to properly balance a third faction combat system, there would need to be significantly diminishing returns in everything from territory hold bonuses, to tier weapons and armor bonuses. If there isn't a geometrically increasing difficulty curve to match the war efforts, the zerg will become the inevitable tactic yet again.

I have more thoughts on this of course, but that is for another time. First, lets discuss third factions.
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Azarael
Posts: 5343

Re: Third Faction

Post#2 » Sun Oct 16, 2016 7:41 pm

We can't implement this.

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