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Vampire Townhall 12/12/15

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Dec 13th, 2015
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  1. Ideas/Comments/Misc
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  3. -It would be great if the Dominion did more, like Houses had meetings with each other to discuss those roles that Abhorash assigned them, or had intra-House meetings, but that is understandably largely player-motivated.
  5. Player Q&A
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  7. Q: We need something to -make- the houses work together and communicate. Is there anything we can do to make the Dominion more useful in helping that?
  8. A: Largely? A lot of that is on the players making that effort, unfortunately. We've tried to provide ways and pushing to try to help bring that about, but players don't always do what we hope. If any of you think of ways we can better promote it, do let me know. I'll work out what I can.
  10. Q: Are there any plans to expand the role of the Dominion, or to give members within the ability to progress through ranks and such? Or is advancement primarily supposed to reside with Houses, with the Dominion just functioning as a loose conglomerate (which will remain mostly the same as it is now)?
  11. A: We really want to keep the Dominion as a loose conglomerate, as you say, but if there is increased player interest we could definitely look more into it. We've shoved around ideas on the backend to do something like that, but it's seemed that any Dominion work has been falling a bit flat.
  13. Q: I was wondering if a non-dominion house would ever become an option, outside of a player formed clan?
  14. A: At this point, we are not looking to add non-dominion houses. We've attempted this in the past with the Imperium, and then ended up with too many houses. I can't speak to the extended future. We can begin to possibly work towards it in the extended future, maybe.
  16. Q: Given the current direction of the consanguine and its struggle to be seen as a force to be feared. What if anything is being done to bolster the story arc insofar as giving the consanguine an enemy/goal to strive for which will give players a sense of purpose. I ask because as stated the admin want us to create our own events so to speak. However when we try to create pathways for conflict it is the VERY same few characters halting it because it does not fit the direction of their so called houses. So with the limitation to circumvent this how do upstairs propose to correct this?
  17. A: Vampires have several upcoming enemies in both the NPC and PC sense. There's quite a lot charted out. It's still in its early stages so we can't really say anything beyond that little tidbit. The rest of what you asked is largely player-centric. Properly conveying your character through roleplay can do a lot to that, and I can recall plenty of former vampires that have achieved that.
  19. Q: Houses are dying off with Neb for example having three active players. With this in mind is there anything being considered to break the cycle of this house does X and this house does Y. Because we all know it is not as easy as that, yet it still gets used and sadly creating the same issue as we had before with one large house holding all the players.
  20. A: I'm going to ask a question about that in the next part, to get a general sense of how players feel houses are standing currently and in the future. As it stands, we have no plans to change houses directly. But as a general note, houses change all the time with active players - there's not a ton that can be done besides a lot more player work. Charisma goes a long, long way with orgs.
  22. Q: My question isn't so much about the state of vampires but more about this here journal thing. I wouldn't of paid it much attention after reading it except Abhorash brought it up and Herolt posted a public post about it. Is there something going on or about to happen with it? Not trying to dig for spoilers I guess, just curious. The mob Sarita pointed me to has been quiet and I'm not sure if that's cause no one was around to mob possess or no one around liked me enough to mob possess it.
  23. A: That is part of lore we're working on trying to expand for you all - kind of details on the background of what makes you all you. Why you feed on blood, why you burn in the light, etc, etc. We have other pieces of lore we're working on to go along with this, but they'll be a little later down the road. Holidays and all! We just want to give you all a little more to work with more than just 'rawr i be a vampyre'.
  25. Q: Is the lore that's in place going to change any?
  26. A: It may be fleshed out more, but I don't know that existing lore will change. We tend to not really change past-lore and just expand on it so more is explored.
  28. Admin Q/A:
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  30. Q: What do you think is positive or negative about the Dominion? Where do you think the Dominion will be/should be in the future?
  32. Responses:
  34. The Dominion is great - Because let's face it, players are too petty to do things for the greater good of everyone than just themselves. It has some sort of control on things. However, I think it needs to have a bigger part in things, mostly because if it doesn't, Houses don't communicate or try to work together. It's annoying. We could be way better than we are, if players would work together.
  36. But players historically have petty nonsense going on that makes drama and blah blah. I think in the future, the Dominion needs a bigger role. More Dominion, more bros together in the houses, more arghpee.
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  38. So I'm really really new here, and that may be a big part of it. However so far I have felt zero Dominion-type presence in my existence. Everyone is really cool and swell and a couple of people rp with me when they're about, but I don't see that it has any sort of regular impact on interactions. Which could just be because I'm new and not even technically a vampire yet.
  40. I really feel like there's a HUGE well of rp potential there though and I'm itching to draw some awesome from it.
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  42. Player: You can't have it both ways. To-date all the Dominion has done is put the Houses against each other for Abh's approval. Most notably in the first two bloodhunts. If you want it to bring houses closer together, there need to be events that facilitate that. That said--it's about 90% on the players in that regard. I've both seen and extended attempts that fell flat because no one else wants to participate outside of their circle. The Admin, frankly, can't really do anything about that.
  44. Admin: Well, the bloodhunts were supposed to be friendly competition. Unfortunately, players sometimes go overboard - it can't be helped. That is why we have stepped in with many of these things to make sure it doesn't go further than it already has. As far as the rest, what sorts of things have you tried offering? I know of the firedances, but any other things? I'm mostly trying to gauge what houses do for group interaction.
  46. Player: I'm just saying, you can't foster the competitive mentality with things like the purge, and the bloodhunts, an then expect us to all be best friends. I know Bahir'an had a ball--that only Eliser and I showed up to outside of house members.
  48. Admin: Alright, understood. Anything else?
  50. Player: For all that the other present leaders are complaining about houseleaders that are unwilling to do anything wih other houses, I've only been approached by Malok and Riluo, the former of which was proposing the afforementioned ball when he was HL. That's all I really have. If you don't ask, there's not a whole lot I can do to help create group-roleplay.
  52. Player: Do agree with in regards to the Dominion pretty much being the Imperium 2.0.
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  54. Admin: Before we move on I just want to say that it's a two-way way street. There's plenty you can do on your own end in order to foster good relations with other houses.
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  56. Player: Just wanted to say that I think one of the negative things about the Dominion is that Abhorash. Not him or what he does but sometimes he'll be online and he appears to be exactly like another player.
  58. He might be responding to people or w/e, but it'd be nice if when you saw him online there was some type of engagement over the dominion channel.
  60. Admin: Clearly he's just mimicking being a player as best he can, down to the afking. But yes sometimes the player will log in and forget to log out. Technically the timeout should take care of that eventually.
  62. Player: I just think it'd be neat if he interacted more socially. Maybe just spark a discussion or hold a lecture about how awesome we are or something. Small things.
  64. Admin: Well we'd need to exclude you from those lectures so it's kind of moot really.
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  66. Player: I like that the Dominion is a loose conglomerate, but I also think maybe it could be more involved without imposing too much on the independence of the Houses? Right now, I think the apathy is inherent in the way the organization is set up. Sort of like how the first failed US government - with the Articles of Confederation - gave so much deference to the state governments that the federal government had no influence of its own and could basically do nothing. (Sorry for dat reference.) Maybe if there was a leader secondary in the Dominion to Abhorash whose job it was to try to get people together? Or a few of those positions? I guess that runs the risk of more useless titles, but if someone who actually had the job to do that, and other people knew it, it might be more likely.
  68. Admin: Reference is lost on me I'm afraid, I'm not from the US. I think I understand where you're coming from though. We have discussed similar things internally in the past, and a large part of this town hall is to help us figure out what direction to take.
  70. Player: Also agree with Nerida that there could be a lot of rp potential there if we mixed it up! I'd definitely like to be able to interact more with other people in the Dominion. We should have like a foreign exchange student type program but with Houses instead of countries...dunno how that'd work, but I guess you could have a sponsor/mentor from another House, as a new person? Oh wait sorry, that would probably have to be player-driven too. Hmm. Could there be like a system to proffer ideas/events to the Dominion that everyone in it could vote for?
  72. Admin: You mean like a referendum? I'm not sure how referendums work for the Dominion currently, actually. I'll need to take a look at that later but it shouldn't be too hard to open the referendum system to the Dominion if it's not already.
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  74. Player: I will start on the negative aspects because I am a real downer like that and end on a high because who does not like a happy ending! So the dominion feels like it serves no purpose other than to maintain the same old characteristics of the Imperium and allowing a few to oversee it without doing anything to truly inspire the players they serve. Of course things are brought up but it soon dies off and as stated before leadership requires charisma and a want to inspire others. The current system does not do this instead it creates clicks which contributes very little. This could be changed if we all sat down in the future and tried to bounce around ideas insofar as upstairs and players shared ideas. So it is fixable, although it might require a bit of give and take and players putting away our egos. Now the positive because that negative was a bit on the nasty side. I LOVE the use of mechanics like the pillars, rooms and interactions it can bring for people. That is wonderful and should be seen as a great step towards future things in dominion. I also feel the bits of lore coming out are a good example of opening avenues for interaction and I really want to encourage you guys to keep at it as it does not go unnoticed. So thank you for the hard work.
  76. Admin: Alright, glad you're enjoying the recent stuff. Thanks for the feedback.
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  78. Player: So I can only state from my time as a vampire alt, which was awhile ago, as to what the state of vampires was back then. Largely, I agree with Hadrak that a charismatic player can go far, however I believe that there are some mechanical enhancements that can be made between the houses that can further both cooperation and competition. Originally, I was going to just offer up the recommendation that houses compete against one another on different sorts of pursuits such as hunting, literary contributions, etc. that factor into some kind of score. After a period of time, whichever house has the most 'points' gains a minor tangible benefit. This can encourage player interactivity, provide the members with something to work towards, etc. The other suggestion I was going to offer, due to some of what I've heard here, is keeping the four current houses as 'major' houses but allowing vassal houses to form under them that can contribute to the aforementioned system. The vassal houses would still be a part of the major houses and contribute to that major house, but it offers more roleplay opportunities for bloodlines.
  80. Minor tangible benefits, by the way, can be something as minor as Abhorash's favor, experience bonuses, or something like that. I feel like part of the Dominion's flavor is that there is a great game of sorts between all of the other houses. They're aligned, but I see the potential for a mechanical implementation of said competition.
  82. As for vassal houses, this can allow people to have their splintered bloodlines without having to necessarily worry about stagnant houses, which was a large problem for vamps back during the Imperium days.
  84. Admin: Intra-House competitions are things we've explored and run before but haven't had that much success with. The competitive aspect was brought up earlier in the discussions actually. We actually used to have minor and major houses back in the day, but we're struggling to populate the four houses we have without adding extra divisions amongst them unfortunately. The idea is neat though, but just unrealistic for us to explore.
  86. Player: Lastly, I do want to say that my time on my vampire character was really enjoyable. I can't speak from experience on the Imperium because it wasn't around then, but the Dominion has done a really good job. I know some people hate Abhorash and his function, but I think having the Source around instead of it being a player that goes inactive forever is a good thing. That's all from me.
  87. ------------- Player: Well I agree with Riluo as well but I do have a question about whatever happened to every house having someone becoming a emperor/empress and only two houses have it done.
  89. Admin: At this point, we've moved past the q/a portion. We're discussing the dominion specifically right now, which is just to say what's good/bad and what you could see in the future.
  91. Player: It is apart of the dominion and how it is ran is why I am asking.
  93. Admin: It's not related to what we're asking about, which I just specified which parts we are looking for answer concerning. We're not specifically answering questions.
  95. We've mentioned it before on the forums, but we decided to discontinue the emperor/empress siring for now. But yes, as Dristin said, this isn't related to the current topic.
  97. We want answers to the topics of what is good/bad about the dominion and what you could see the future of the dominion being.
  99. Player: I am currently upset by that as well because to me it shows favoritism and as Riluo said a clique mentality.
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  101. Player: So I mentioned this at another smaller townhall type meeting a while back. But I thought it might be something that would be cool to implement in more organizations, so I'll bring it up again. We had talked about having a couple of custom honors lines that an organization could be entitled to award based on completion of some player defined requirements. I think that'd be a neat way to add some power to org leaders and some interest for members to participate. It could be a power each guild, house, city has access too, subject to approval as any custom creation is. On a side note completely unrelated, say two vampires wanted to bring a third vampire into their marriage, is that something that could be made mechanically possible?
  103. The reason I bring the first part up is because it would give some power to the Dominion, could be something that the house leaders could vote to award. Would require Dominion inter-relations.
  105. Admin: Marriage system would need to be rewritten to support something like that, which doesn't even make the list of priorities sadly.
  107. Alright, we can discuss some of that stuff later maybe, but we'll keep it in mind. Anything else on the questions asked?
  109. Player: Nope, thanks for all the good stuff.
  111. Q: In the topic of houses - what do you think is good or bad about them? Where do you see them going in the future? So, same thing as Dominion, but specific to houses themselves.
  113. Player: Houses are good for having a specific goal - I like that we have houses for different purposes. It gives each house a feel. However, like with D'baen, we're shifting away from the 'old ways' and kind of taking a fresh approach - which seems to have done wonders for us. Is there a possibility we can update purposes, or redefine roles? I know it's touchy, because some really capitalize on things. But maybe more generic purposes, that allow people to sort of flex and grow and not be like 'I want to PK, Nebre, even though they're dead' for example, like Riluo said. Maybe a bit more -lore- behind it instead of purpose, and let purpose be included in all the houses. Like. you can be a pk whore in D'baen and Nebre'seir - let's fine tune their purposes, I guess. That way people don't have to join one house based on one goal.
  115. And I definitely don't play favorites with D'baen because, hey, I understand. We want new players to be engaged - if they don't like what our house is about, I don't want them to disappear when there's a house that fits them better.
  117. Admin: It really depends. A lot of the roles, for the original existing houses, were set from the start and we've tried to expand upon them. I know we'd be willing to redefine roles if we could find any that make sense cohesively. That tends to be the issue with large changes, especially with so many having heavily established lore.
  119. Player: But the way that it is now, seems a bit too focused on one thing. Maybe if we generalize their roles a bit more, it'd give people more room to grow in a house that's fit for them. Does that make sense? I'm tired, long day. But trying.
  121. Admin: So, just keep that in mind everyone.
  123. Generalizing actually hurt more, which is what most houses did for a while there so that they could get newbies fairly easily. So, we're not looking to go back that way.
  125. The defined roles are what we use for general RP of the houses. It's how we give them specific purposes in the Dominion, rather than they just kind of flub around. Houses can totally offer 'trees' within themselves to explore more than just what they show on the outside, and you can update your house files (within reason) to be a little more flexible. There is a lot of flexibility for house leaders.
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  127. Player: I like the idea of Houses because they facilitate a smaller community (or are intended to, at least). I also loved reading the lore of the different Houses, and when I first got into the story of how each House was founded and all that, it felt nice and mythological. As some who was recently a new player, though, I at first found it hard to distinguish between some of them, and they all seemed to stress similar things - like excellence in all things, pursuit of power, etc. More definition of identity would be great, as would more clearly alternative choices in lifestyles and principles. I know that's kind of a systemic problem that's not easy to solve, but just wanted to note it. I also feel, sometimes, that members might be spread too thin across the houses sometimes, but that might just be a natural ebb and flow.
  129. Admin: We're expanding some of the background lore for options houses could further explore to define themselves more. In the end, though, a lot of things need to be more elaborated on by houses - we kind of give the foundation, houses work from there. That's the general idea of what we do most times.
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