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Netheril : Age of Magic

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Journals & Backgrounds / Re: Lauriella Sithiir
« Last post by Winterhawk99 on July 22, 2020, 06:02:31 am »
working on a new intro story. May take a few weeks as I must weight all the rp options. Meaning I don't necessary want Lauriella to have access to the ship and all the benefits within to circumvent the usual rp for a new player.
Journals & Backgrounds / Re: Lauriella Sithiir
« Last post by Rainman on July 20, 2020, 07:37:17 am »
You could have a plaque on the ship if you like. When people take the effort I like to do what I can :)
Journals & Backgrounds / Re: Lauriella Sithiir
« Last post by Winterhawk99 on July 20, 2020, 03:52:45 am »
That would be cool Rainman. I'm surprised, and its very cool. Thank you. have to rewrite my story :) I can do that
Journals & Backgrounds / Re: Lauriella Sithiir
« Last post by Rainman on July 19, 2020, 10:36:56 am »
We can add the ship to a harbour easy enough, I don't have an issue with that if you are keen to do so.
Journals & Backgrounds / Re: Lauriella Sithiir
« Last post by Winterhawk99 on July 19, 2020, 02:37:39 am »
Don't think the Dms will use the moonflower in their adventures but since its hidden there, I figure I have to have her drawings for them.  they may have someone stumble upon her even if Lauri hid the schooner with the utmost care. So I have her dimensions and make just in case.


General Discussion / Re: Step into the Future - Questions and Suggestions
« Last post by Rainman on July 19, 2020, 12:08:40 am »
I believe we have provided this information in different locations and posts but I will try to answer some questions here but as you appreciate I cant give out all the new content and secrets ... you will need to see it at launch time.

Will there be a Time Jump?
Yes, around 150 years

Will there be a Crafting System?
Yes, it will be a new system that has been made to fit our server

What are the new DM Factions?
You will at the time of your character creation, be able to join and have a backstory connected to one of three DM factions. These are all based in the town of Conch, in one of the three districts that each faction will influence/control. This will give new players a direct connection to the story from day one. Of course we will have your standard option of joining the story with your own background as normal, but we would encourage that you be involved in what is happening in the town of Conch.

What about lore and information from the old server?
Within reason we are keeping as much of the lore and information from the old server, in one form or another. I will give you some examples ... the Enclave of Valstiir has crashed into the ground, how and why will need to be found out and this will have bits of lore connected to the old story. Another example is the Floating Arcanist Palace that sat over the river between Hadrian and Southbank, it also has come down and ended up in the river between the two towns. Its remains have been turned into a Bridge between the two towns making one large City of Hadrian ... and yes you can explore this updated town. Again how and why this happen can be found out at launch. I have more examples but you can see we are keeping the connect to the old story/server in place.

Will there be a Floating Enclave to explore?
Yes, but we will hold that information till launch and I believe you will be happy with the direction we have taken on this.

Will I be able to play a monster race?
Yes, not only will you have an updated Sullivan's to explore, you will be able to move around in Conch to a degree. Some monster races that maybe deemed to be to extreme to be considered that they might not be able to live with other races, but goblins, kobolds, lizardmen, bugbears and other small monster races will be able to be played. Of course Giants, Orges and such will be still on application and based at Sullivan's.

What about other races?
The town of Conch will have a good mix of other races and as you might have seen I have been asking about your thoughts on Elves and such. I believe having small hubs where these races may travel to will be the best option moving forward, maybe to collect information and supplies you might not get elsewhere.

What about the Death System?
You might have seen that we have opened this up to player and community feedback, with some options we are looking at but with death you need some type of risk and penalty for a death of your character and with the increase in possible epic levels to obtain we need to get this right and balanced.

What about Loot and Treasure?
We have a system almost completed, that will give a wide range of options and power levels to give options to those higher level players. So yes a higher magic level of items.

Players Housing?
I will leave this to Delta to announce but we are all excited ant I believe he has been providing some examples on Discord.

Movement around the map/server?
With the current boats and airships, we are adding in a caravan option. Encounters will still happen with updated areas and monsters. Plus we are adding a Portal system that will be connected to the higher magic level we have been speaking about.

What about quests?
We will still have quests but which is in discussion now, may only designed for characters up to 10-15 levels with quests have a minimum level requirement only. There might be some lower level quests that are designed for startup character with a level cap. Moving forward from level 15 will be more open dungeons/areas and with harder spawns that you would be silly to explore unless you have a party or an epic character. Of course you might need to travel to these places and obtain information to where they are located and maybe connected to information already provided in this post.

What about feedback and player suggestions?
We have asked for those keen to be involved in the development to put their hand up and have a number of players adding lore, information, feedback and areas/content to the new server. From all reports those that are helping are excited in what they have seen but it is still a work in progress. As you might have seen we have been asking for feedback on key areas and taking that on board.

So for old/returning players their will be that connection and for new players we will have a way to connect straight into the story. There maybe changes to this information but we will keep you informed as best we can ...

Please ask if I have not answered a question. Thanks :)
General Discussion / Re: Step into the Future - Questions and Suggestions
« Last post by SteelsSweets on July 18, 2020, 04:23:24 pm »
Outfit saving so clothes horses like me don't have to carry around a billion different outfits. :)
General Discussion / Re: Step into the Future - Questions and Suggestions
« Last post by Solomon on July 18, 2020, 03:40:49 pm »
      If there is a time jump, I'd imagine we'd see some updates in layout, some expansion (or destruction, reduction, etc.) depending on how successful a faction/city has been during that lapse. And it might be a fine way to introduce new ruling NPCs such as the Sullivan, mayor, etc. A new revamping of existing places will, even if on a small scale, bring that new server smell that folks like.

      My following suggestion is hardly tied to the looks and themes and direction of the new server and is instead meant to encourage more administrative things. Our little server here has had a number of Grand Exodus'es in it's time. People have made stances and statements and left in droves until the server had a handful of active players, a handful of DMs, and not really much to do as the content was designed with group play in mind. The suggestion, then, is for the DMs to be more actively engaged with the player base and for the players to have a place in which they can give feedback on their experiences and have a dialogue in which those experiences can be seen, addressed, and effectively alter the server for the better. It will require more work with an active and public changelog, it will be a hassle to keep up with everyone's whining and complaining about something that someone made and is very likely proud of and will be hurt that it isn't enjoyed. It's the hard part of running a Persistent World instead of a social RP hub.

      I have seen that there's an effort to bolster DM numbers and engagement. There have been drives to corral new players into the lobby and waiting room of this revamped server. It's nice and it's refreshing. Good job on that! If it goes well and launch is relatively stable, I'd even throw in to try and get some more advertising so that when fringe folks fall off, we've still got a glut of players here who can do the real hard work of entertaining each other between events and server story ongoings. Sure would be nice to hop in and see someone else running around!

      Factions are always a point of contention. There has to be DM involvement to make joining a faction worth while in the long term, and it needs to be more than mechanically rewarding. Roleplayers already have a habit to form subgroups and pockets and cliques. We like to write with people who fit well with our own writing styles, we like to play with people who play at the same time, and we like to chase themes with people going after similar themes and goals. Given that this place is something of a frontier in design (and assuming it still will be), I'd suggest letting factions be some sort of overarching metaplot interaction option while encouraging player posses and smaller groups to have the ability to hunt down their own shared goals in a more minor aspect of the story. Everyone wants to have an impact. Everyone wants to leave their mark in some form or fashion, even if it is just in the memories of the other players. And by encouraging the existing nature of cliques and small groups that happen within larger groups, you can have events tailored to a specific theme with a manageable number of players and those players are already engaged and interested in the content of the event as it is made for them. Trying to force everyone to get along and to roleplay and write at different levels usually just causes schisms anyhow.

      Monster Races. Whew. Talk about a tough thing. The implementation of the last version of monsters was... interesting. Had there been enough engagement and DM driven activity for the monsters to enjoy being more than vaguely stronger mechanically in some cases, I suspect they would have been played a bit more and for longer periods. I personally think that, if they are even going to be an option to choose (and you know that I would choose them), they need to have something happening. And it's going to involve even more of the DM teams time and effort for a more niche subgroup of the server. So, unless a DM group is willing to tackle being almost entirely monster focused, I think they should be swept aside as NPCs and the previously monster centric area be transitioned to an evil-centric area. This way, there's no alienation, no sort of limitation, and no need for DMs to thin themselves even further. Focus on what gets players active and involved. If monster race options aren't it, even more reason to trim the fat in favor of building better flavor elsewhere.

      A server wiki would be amazing. That's the sort of thing that helps people see what options there are mechanically, it gives an overview of the server, a place to put maps and guides, and it encourages people to jump in and help on the editing. But this would have to be started by DMs and it would mean constantly having a changelog that is up to date, accurate, and is in essence a living document. For a wiki to work, we need transparency and documentation on mechanical changes as well as area overviews. It's an undertaking and is not exactly exciting or flashy, but it means people can poke the wiki, theory craft a build that matches what they want to do at whatever level they want to be, and nobody is surprised by changes that ruin their plans.

      One aspect that every server has to deal with is economy. While the design of an economy by someone who isn't both a learned economist and a seasoned persistent world player is incredibly difficult to bail down, I think utilizing player feedback and suggestions should help pretty well. People like banks, it seems, but are split on things such as coin weight, expected prices, etc. For the purely player-driven, I can suggest at least one thing: legacy items. When adjusting the level of power, price, and utility of items, some will eventually be found to be too powerful or outside of the theme. In that case, it would be best to remove it from the loot tables but leave the existing items in the hands of players. They will either trade/sell them around and keep money flowing until the items are nabbed up by collectors or until they get lost with the death of a PC/leaving of a player. But this also needs to be bolstered by rotating in new items as well. They don't all have to be massively powerful, and they don't even have to be good. Cursed items that don't really do anything catch the eyes of people who like them and they'll pay good money to collect them. It can even be a story point for them. Weak items and one-off consumables and all of that can get used. Then, everyone in a while, try to assess the items least used/owned/purchased and phase them out, too. Keeps the stores clean, it focuses on what players actually enjoy, and it can even by a seasonal or cyclical thing wherein people will actively want to participate in various quests, events, etc. just to get what could become a collectible/legacy item that they can sell for big money.

      Lastly, honestly, this one kind of is a tiny bit of an attack. But hopefully one that encourages togetherness against a united enemy. Don't let people get bored. Don't ignore criticism. Don't try to sweep the people who leave and their reasoning for doing so under a rug. If people are complaining and their complaints aren't addressed and taken care of, eventually they will leave. If people see that the administration does not address or fix complaints and people leave because of it, they'll leave under the assumption that their own problems will not be addressed or fixed. And then you create the ever popular Death Spiral. Trying something new, inventive, and important leads to failure. So fail up. Learn from the mistakes of the past to make today better. Learn from today's mistakes and make tomorrow better. And learn from tomorrow's mistakes and make the day after better. It goes on. You will get egg on your face, you will get called out for bad behaviour, for bad design, for accidents and typos, for player preference, for sneezing with your shirt halfway on. If you can address those complaints (even if it's just a "This [problem] is not seen as a problem by the Dev team and was implemented with a purpose." Or "There is a solution, but it may be difficult to do and we are focusing on other, more critical problems at this time. We have added it to our public to-do list as 'Eventually.'" Or "Oh, shit. Sorry. I made a mistake in editing a file. That will get fixed with the next update and thanks for catching it!"), the player base will be more happy, more trusting, and more willing to give both leeway and feedback. And more feedback that is utilized and more trust from the players means that when a problem strikes, folks don't leave all at once but stick it out in hopes and expectations that a solution will be made and implemented.

      I am certain there are a great many more opinions and suggestions I can give and I will do my best to give them. But I do think tackling the systemic issues and flaws will help build a stronger foundation for the server to be built upon.
Development Ideas - Feedback / Re: Implementing Epic Levels
« Last post by Vydaera on July 18, 2020, 02:58:44 pm »
First of all, I wanna say that I 100% agree with having to App for a character as they move into Epic levels, as they represent a change in tone and scale for a character's story. It's a very good idea for DMs and players to be on the same page as to where a character is going in regards to roleplay, and the transition to epic levels is the perfect cutoff for that to happen. It won't be every day that a character makes the leap, and making it special feels GOOD.

You know what doesn't feel good? Having control taken away from you. There is a big difference between collaborating with players to bring their story to a natural conclusion and someone's story coming to an unexpected halt for something they had no control over. Netheril's strength is in the connection the players have with major story events, and seeing the world change as a result of their actions. There is nothing about introducing the threat of Permadeath, epic or not, that is going to improve that advantage.

Putting epic levels behind a permadeath risk is a huge turn off for some players. It's akin to putting epic levels behind a paywall-I'll say it again for those in the back: USING PERMADEATH TO GATE PROGRESS IS THE SAME AS USING MONEY. Sure, some people are willing to pay the price to increase the mechanical power of their characters, but it feels just as dirty to those who cannot and will not.

I noticed a partial option in the polls, that only PvP deaths would count against your Lives- I have seen this work well on other servers, with the following caveat: PvP MUST be agreed upon by both parties. Some players live for the thrill of challenge and risk- that's absolutely okay, and I feel this compromise would allow the people that WANT that to find it with other like-minded individuals. What is absolutely NOT okay, is bullying. If consent is not required by PvP, some players will inevitably build a mechanically strong character to abuse others, and once it happens, that means every other player needs to build around that threat or just accept that their character can be taken away at any moment if one of the powergamers decides it. The absence of Consent has just as many problems IG as it does IRL.

A lot of players have strong views on this subject, and that's to be expected. In the end, I think the system that allows for the most player choice is the one that is best for the server, and from the list of options, that's probably the middle ground of PvP deaths counting towards character deletion. It lets the players that are interested in the risk involve themselves with others who also do, and for those that don't there isn't any unwanted predatory behavior.

Update after reading some of the other posts: If you feel the need to kill off characters so that they will constantly reroll to have lower-level people playing, you are going to steadily lose your playerbase. Players that want to finish their character arcs and move on to something new are just as valid as those that want to keep a veteran character around and tell more stories with it. Netheril should be a place where people WANT to keep telling their stories, not a place where they keep getting their stories cut short when someone else decides they are bored with you.
Development Ideas - Feedback / Re: Implementing Epic Levels
« Last post by Solomon on July 18, 2020, 02:50:10 pm »
      This server has had a very significant problem in regards to late/endgame content and roleplay. Opting in for permadeath in order to mechanically have more levels/power is fine and all, but that means that there needs to be things to do at those levels. And not just three quests to repeat on the daily. It means active story lines that bring people back often enough to keep the community together. It means having some serious interaction between DMs/EMs and the players. There's not going to be any motivation to go into those epic levels if there's nothing to do and rerolling a new character will only be encouraged with having an active player base that has stuff to do, more than just an economy -- the economy will always flatline unless you're making some items unavailable and interesting new ones of a similar power level but different directions. Good luck doing so without power creep and/or running out of items.

      I like this place. I like the theme, the setting, and I do like the players I've encountered. But the interaction with DMs has always been difficult and all decisions have been obfusticated, hidden, undocumented, and there's even been miscommunication between the DMs when there were more active ones. You guys need to have change logs, you need to have some serious organization, and even though it's not a job in which you're getting paid, you guys need to approach it with professionalism and efficiency. If someone comes in, kicks ass with their own personal story, applies for some bigger DM story, goes into epic levels, and then either sits around because there's nothing to do or because their tickets/requests aren't being followed up on or aren't even being integrated into the server, they're not going to want to make a new character just to do the same thing. They'll just be on that high level character and socially roleplay until they are bored and move on.

      Permanent death is fine if handled well and if there's a draw to it. If it's just there to limit high level players who are already limited in the content they can enjoy and be rewarded for, then it's not worth it.
[Reposted from Discord]

      I do not personally think that permadeath is a bad solution or a good solution on it's own. It is the context in which it lies and the surrounding options and reasons that determines that. If this is designed to deter people from wanting to be high level (not consciously, perhaps), then it would be effective if seemingly pointless. The difficulty lies in creating an engaging end-game content that encourages the playstyles that you'd want to see from people at those epic levels. If you want them to roleplay important things, there needs to be important things that they can actually do and affect. If you want them to be mechanical monsters of strength and to be made a challenge point for other players, for events, etc. then you have to ensure that there's a reward worth having. And, generally, that reward is going to vary from player to player and character to character. Some are fine just with a title or acknowledgement. Some want fluff stuff like a house, custom npc junk, and some want crunch stuff like extra gear, powerful spells, what have you.

      If there is no reason for someone to play long enough to reach high levels (soft cap+no DM interaction/events/cohesion), then having permadeath will not entirely matter one way or the other. If there's a mechanical lag in entertainment, you'll lose people who want to stomp on things to pass the time. If there's a large story/roleplay lag in entertainment, you'll lose people who want to progress metaplots and intrigue. If there's a player base fallout in which most of the population up and leaves, be it because of either of the two previous problems or because the DM team cannot work together effectively and create an enjoyable experience with active ongoings,  then you'll lose out on the people willing to reroll and stick around. Permadeath is a big decision. It can be rewarding to those willing to make new characters and who want to make an impact. If there's no impact to be made or if the player has no interest in progressing into epic levels, then it's even more critical to have a mid-late game that they can enjoy without losing out on events and rewards. Otherwise you enter a trap. 'If you'd like to have more things to do and are bored, enter epic levels!' can really be interpreted as 'Well, you chose not to go in for permadeath, so you are just shit out of luck. Maybe roll a new character that will go epic, huh?'

      My response may feel like a non answer or some sort of attack, and I promise it isn't. My personal stance on permadeath is 'meh, sure, if there's reason.' But I just want to ensure that either outcome, there is activity to do, options to enjoy, and choices to make. If there's no reason for them to log on and keep going, regardless of opting in for permadeath/epic levels, then the system fundamentally fails and needs to be fixed. So, perhaps treat those who reach those levels as a sort of testing board. Eventually (I would think) the whole server will at least have gotten one character to this critical point and DMs need to stay aware and engaged at this level to ensure if the levelling process was enjoyable, if their time spent on levels was of an acceptable/expected/designed pace, if the things that they can do at those different levels was enjoyable. There needs to be a constant stream of feedback and of interaction. And it very much needs to be visible. Not just for the player base but for the DM team to accrue information and statistics and ideas so that they can keep making an enjoyable place!
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