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The Case for Combined Alliance Scoring and Rewards


Ruq
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Hi all, Ruq here, back with another crusade post -- this time focused on campaign scoring and rewards.

Problem:

  • With the change from Divine Favor (DF) to Conquest score determining the victor in Dregs, the old problem of individual guild scoring / capturing objectives and reward distribution comes into question.

Solution:

  • Combine all alliance earned conquest points under the alliance executor guild's score (big shield) and distribute non-divine favor point rewards only to the executor.

Discussion:

  • One primary argument for this change is ease of management and the reintroduction of tension into alliances. By combining all conquest points into a single alliance-based scoring system, many issues regarding who captures which holdings, who obtains which rewards, and how to organize across allies become mute. This shifts much of the tension regarding rewards and strategy to the players, rather than the system. It encourages guilds to actively participate in discussions surrounding alliance expectations and distribution of wealth.
  • One important note: this would only occur for overall conquest point scoring to determine a campaign victor. Individual guilds would still compete at the DF level for additional campaign rewards.

Implementation:

  • No massive changes to the current scoring or leaderboard system need to be implemented. Simply adding an additional tab on the leaderboards denoting "Overall Campaign Conquest," some something similar, would identify which alliance is in the overall lead, whereas the current conquest scoring leaderboard would form the basis for determining current, individual guild performance in power or conquest-based DF cards.

 

I welcome all discussion and comments regarding this idea. If you support this idea, please react and comment accordingly, I encourage those who disagree to do the same.

Edited by Ruq

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The problem, as I see it, is with conquest points determining the winner, alliances will be incentivized to stack all their "pvp characters" into one tag within the alliance, or at least ensure that one tag within the alliance controls all the keeps/forts/outposts to maximize conquest points. This is why we need some sort of combined score for conquest points. 

I think you keep glory/wealth/power as "guild" level objectives, but conquest points are an "alliance" level objective.

As far as implementation I can a couple different options.

  1. As Ruq said above, the "big shield", or whoever starts the alliance, receives all the conquest points from all of the "small shields". If the small shields leave and join another alliance, they don't take any points with them. At the end of the campaign the guild leader of the "big shield" gets all the rewards and passes them out as they see fit. This maintains tension within an alliance. 
    1. One thing I wonder is what would happen if a big shield decided to sub under another big shield? I suppose then the previous big shield would give all their points to the new big shield? Or would they be deleted? This is an edge case that would have to be solved somehow. 
  2. Another option would be to keep conquest points tracked throughout the campaign on the guild level just as they are now. Then, once the campaign is over, points from guilds within an alliance are added together to determine a winning alliance and the guild leader of the big shield gets the rewards to distribute the same as in the first scenario. 

That's my $0.02 on it. As it stands right now you can bet there's going to be conquest "feeder" point guilds in alliances. Otherwise you're just dividing your score up and making it harder on yourself. 

Blazzen <Lords of Death>

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remove alliances seems easier, let me rephrase - remove alliances on dregs/campaign if you want alliances go play on infected, if you want to ally with other guilds in dregs deal with FF and have your politics on who gets what or turn on eachother and fight over stuff :D

Edited by PAINDOTCOM
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2 minutes ago, blazzen said:

The problem, as I see it, is with conquest points determining the winner, alliances will be incentivized to stack all their "pvp characters" into one tag within the alliance, or at least ensure that one tag within the alliance controls all the keeps/forts/outposts to maximize conquest points. This is why we need some sort of combined score for conquest points. 

I think you keep glory/wealth/power as "guild" level objectives, but conquest points are an "alliance" level objective.

As far as implementation I can a couple different options.

  1. As Ruq said above, the "big shield", or whoever starts the alliance, receives all the conquest points from all of the "small shields". If the small shields leave and join another alliance, they don't take any points with them. At the end of the campaign the guild leader of the "big shield" gets all the rewards and passes them out as they see fit. This maintains tension within an alliance. 
    1. One thing I wonder is what would happen if a big shield decided to sub under another big shield? I suppose then the previous big shield would give all their points to the new big shield? Or would they be deleted? This is an edge case that would have to be solved somehow. 
  2. Another option would be to keep conquest points tracked throughout the campaign on the guild level just as they are now. Then, once the campaign is over, points from guilds within an alliance are added together to determine a winning alliance and the guild leader of the big shield gets the rewards to distribute the same as in the first scenario. 

That's my $0.02 on it. As it stands right now you can bet there's going to be conquest "feeder" point guilds in alliances. Otherwise you're just dividing your score up and making it harder on yourself. 

I agree with Blazzen's point 1 regarding the transferal of conquest points. I agree that when a guild leaves an alliance their points stay with the alliance. One way to combat a "big shield" leaving and rejoining another alliance is to simply bar any alliance executor from joining another alliance for the length of the campaign.

For point 2, this is how I envisioned it but they simply add a new leaderboard tab so players can track overall campaign progress.

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2 minutes ago, blazzen said:

Another option would be to keep conquest points tracked throughout the campaign on the guild level just as they are now. Then, once the campaign is over, points from guilds within an alliance are added together to determine a winning alliance and the guild leader of the big shield gets the rewards to distribute the same as in the first scenario. 

On second thought I think this is the better way to do it. One of the issues with combined scores is if you're adding/subtracting them within the campaign it creates all kinds of funky edge cases like this one:

3 minutes ago, blazzen said:

One thing I wonder is what would happen if a big shield decided to sub under another big shield? I suppose then the previous big shield would give all their points to the new big shield? Or would they be deleted? This is an edge case that would have to be solved somehow. 

By tracking conquest points at the guild level all throughout the campaign its less work because it already works that way. No adding/subtracting mid campaign to figure out. Then at the very end they get added together. Should be less work than other solutions. Needs a new UI screen and some under the covers work once a campaign ends but maybe less daunting than swapping points mid campaign. 

Blazzen <Lords of Death>

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1 minute ago, blazzen said:

On second thought I think this is the better way to do it. One of the issues with combined scores is if you're adding/subtracting them within the campaign it creates all kinds of funky edge cases like this one:

By tracking conquest points at the guild level all throughout the campaign its less work because it already works that way. No adding/subtracting mid campaign to figure out. Then at the very end they get added together. Should be less work than other solutions. Needs a new UI screen and some under the covers work once a campaign ends but maybe less daunting than swapping points mid campaign. 

This is fine, but we simply need a way to track this without having to do the math ourselves.

it should be easy to have a secondary conquest tab with a N+1,2,3 type setup to automatically add and sort scores (like an excel table).

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Rebrand alliances to a fealty system and now we can check off having a bend-the-knee mechanic in the game.  You fight for your liege (big shield guild) and as long as your loyalty is rewarded (your cut of the rewards) you will continue to fight for your liege.

 

After all, when you finish a war is it not the king who grants land to his vassals?

Edited by Hungry
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1 minute ago, Hungry said:

Rebrand alliances to a fealty system and now we can check off having a bend-the-knee mechanic in the game.  You fight for your liege (big shield guild) and as long as your loyalty is rewarded (your cut of the rewards) you will continue to fight for your liege.

 

After all, when you finish a war is it not the king who grants land to his vassals?

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSNaJiTmS6EOnaUvhZxRAD

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I don't think giving big shields arbitrary power to distribute campaign rewards and expecting them to do the right thing is the move. The game is designed for betrayal to happen, you just won't see it in Fall or Winter you'll see it after you spent the entire campaign feeding into the alliance "executor" only for them to ghost you and run off with all the rewards + a top 3 placement.

The glory per-member cards were really the best and only thing this game had going for small guilds. Whatever's left of these 1 or 2 guilds are going to be forced into an alliance now where they begin with little leverage and is just going to kill morale in the long run IF they are not somehow guaranteed (on the system side) part of the final cut. My guild came into winter this past campaign tied for 1st and decided to ally up with 2 larger size guilds which saw us being booted out of the top 3 as a consequence. And this is under the current system where conquest is not yet king.

Very well thought out post by Ruq and would love to see input from smaller groups of players, how ever many of them that may still be around

 

Edited by BlackBlood
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Just now, BlackBlood said:

What Hungry said. I don't think giving big shields arbitrary power to distribute campaign rewards and expecting them to do the right thing is the move. The game is designed for betrayal to happen, you just won't see it in Fall or Winter you'll see it after you spent the entire campaign feeding into the alliance "executor" only for them to ghost you and run off with all the rewards + a top 3 placement.

The glory per-member cards were really the best and only thing this game had going for small guilds. Whatever's left of these 1 or 2 guilds are going to be forced into an alliance now where they begin with little leverage and is just going to kill morale in the long run IF they are not somehow guaranteed (on the system side) part of the final cut. My guild came into winter this past campaign tied for 1st and decided to ally up with 2 larger size guilds which saw us being booted out of the top 3 as a consequence. And this is under the current system where conquest is not yet king.

Very well thought out post by Ruq and would love to see input from smaller groups of players, how ever many of them that may still be around

 

This is the entire point though -- you give the executor that power. If you bend the knee, you bend the knee. If you get screwed, you either join the enemy, back-stab them next campaign, or find some other way to exercise your power.
 

If this is a throne war game, there needs to be this kind of political allowance in game. Don't let systems take away from the player's power.

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I very much want this to be a throne war game where one guild wins and gets tons of rewards the "king" can distribute. The politics that come from that are far more interesting to me than winning a fight here and there. I do enjoy the pvp, but the politics is a bigger draw. I can pvp in any game.

 

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18 minutes ago, Ruq said:

This is the entire point though -- you give the executor that power. If you bend the knee, you bend the knee. If you get screwed, you either join the enemy, back-stab them next campaign, or find some other way to exercise your power.
 

If this is a throne war game, there needs to be this kind of political allowance in game. Don't let systems take away from the player's power.

I mean, I do understand the appeal of that even here at the opposite end of the spectrum. The throne war and politics is what differentiated Crowfall for me from the sea of average MMOs out there and what I truly hope will be the case for thousands of other players in the future.

I just worry, and I know you all are in the business of this too, if you tip the scales too far in one favor you will have a throne war but no one around to play the actual game with. But after all we're still in the testing phase so I'm excited to see how the Conquest changes as well as what you've proposed here regarding alliances will change the landscape of Crowfall.

Edited by BlackBlood
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2 hours ago, Hungry said:

Rebrand alliances to a fealty system and now we can check off having a bend-the-knee mechanic in the game.  You fight for your liege (big shield guild) and as long as your loyalty is rewarded (your cut of the rewards) you will continue to fight for your liege.

 

After all, when you finish a war is it not the king who grants land to his vassals?

I like this better. It's simple and avoids complicated situations with joining/rejoining.

  • Big-shield alliance leader owns all objectives captured by little-shield vassals (and thus, gets all points).
  • Big-shield is responsible for compensating vassals and enforcing alliance discipline (eg. taking shared items).

It lets you have situations where a small but influential guild can win by hiring and dismissing mercenaries as needed, cutting deals and playing groups against each other. It could even be one wealthy player.

 

Edit: 

One question would be what to do about previously captured vassal objectives and previously earned points. I think to avoid last-minute alliance swapping, only new captures from vassals would be owned by the big shield. That way if you want to ally with a guild and have them capture stuff for you, you'll need to agree to it in advance.

Edited by nihilsupernum
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11 hours ago, BlackBlood said:

The glory per-member cards were really the best and only thing this game had going for small guilds. Whatever's left of these 1 or 2 guilds are going to be forced into an alliance now where they begin with little leverage and is just going to kill morale in the long run IF they are not somehow guaranteed (on the system side) part of the final cut.

11 hours ago, BlackBlood said:

if you tip the scales too far in one favor you will have a throne war but no one around to play the actual game with.

 

I think both of these points are true, but the good news is Crowfall as a whole doesn't have to die on this hill like other games we have seen. CF can have a Campaign ruleset for zerg v zerg, and can also have a Dregs Campaign for smaller guilds (no friendly alliances + player caps at 12, etc).

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With the split in the conquest /DF i believe the system now supports this kind of play, hopefully the conquest rewards for winning are good enough to put some fire into the politics and so DF can be seen as more like competitive dailies/weeklies/seasonals and can have more cards to focus as temporary seasonal pvp hotspots

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19 hours ago, Hungry said:

Rebrand alliances to a fealty system and now we can check off having a bend-the-knee mechanic in the game.  You fight for your liege (big shield guild) and as long as your loyalty is rewarded (your cut of the rewards) you will continue to fight for your liege.

 

After all, when you finish a war is it not the king who grants land to his vassals?

It does make a lot more thematic sense this way and accomplishes the "bend the knee" mechanic from kickstarter. 

Only thing to figure out is the idea of a big shield leaving an alliance and becoming a small shield and what to do with that guilds points if they do that. Get a good solution for that and this idea is solid IMO. 

Blazzen <Lords of Death>

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1 hour ago, blazzen said:

It does make a lot more thematic sense this way and accomplishes the "bend the knee" mechanic from kickstarter. 

Only thing to figure out is the idea of a big shield leaving an alliance and becoming a small shield and what to do with that guilds points if they do that. Get a good solution for that and this idea is solid IMO. 

I agree. I don't think there has been presented a strong argument against this type of slight tweak to the current system.

In term of big shield leaving an alliance -- I think you lock big shield into their alliance for a campaign. If you take the step to start an alliance and invite others into your alliance, you should be executor for the entire campaign. Your points will remain and even if you remove all members, you are locked into this status for the duration of the campaign. I could see this being an issue for extremely long (months+) campaigns, so in that situation I would argue if an alliance is "disbanded" then their points are lost. Thoughts?

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1 hour ago, Ruq said:

so in that situation I would argue if an alliance is "disbanded" then their points are lost. Thoughts?

Definitely easiest to just delete the points of a big shield if they want to disband their alliance and sub to another guild.

Transferring the points would be more difficult and may not be a good mechanic anyways. For example, last day of the campaign alliance A is leading 10,000 pts, alliance B has 6,000, alliance C has 5,000. You could have Alliance C join alliance B just to beat alliance A and then split the rewards between them. Kinda lame. 

Blazzen <Lords of Death>

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I've played a number of siege games, and this is the first that plays the prison rule system of who wins the campaign. I'm sorry, but I thought this was Guild PvP...you know...winner takes all. I didn't know they s was...we have the numbers, so join our alliance...and be our #$@! or else. Might as well be faction based at that point. 

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On 2/4/2021 at 9:01 AM, blazzen said:

Definitely easiest to just delete the points of a big shield if they want to disband their alliance and sub to another guild.

Transferring the points would be more difficult and may not be a good mechanic anyways. For example, last day of the campaign alliance A is leading 10,000 pts, alliance B has 6,000, alliance C has 5,000. You could have Alliance C join alliance B just to beat alliance A and then split the rewards between them. Kinda lame. 

I think a big shield that disbands their alliance and subs to another should keep their points and objectives (and continue scoring on them so long as they own the objectives), but not gain new points for themselves or capture any new objectives for their guild while they remain a sub-guild.

This allows a big guild to temporarily join a small guild's alliance (eg. to help defend or assault a keep for one night) without giving up their overall ranking or losing any territory.

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