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#1 2019-04-21 01:37:34

jasonrohrer
Administrator
Registered: 2017-02-13
Posts: 2,094

Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

06adIhb.gif

First, the big news:  Potato digging no longer wears out shovels.  May you rejoice with baked, fried, or ketchup'd.

Beyond that, this week's update involves a game-changing experiment.  What if individual or group ownership was an actual thing in the game?

As a designer, I have some pretty big dreams for this game, in terms of what kind of social dynamics will emerge from it.  While I'm very happy with some of the complex interactions that have blossomed inside the game, I feel like some other possibilities have been stunted.  Where's trade?  Where are the stores?  Where's resource contention?  Where's crime?  Where's trans-generational conflict?  Where are the sheriffs? Where are the monarchs?  Where are the guillotines?

Now, there are probably dozens of reasons why such things have not emerged in the game, but I'm starting with the most obvious one:  how can you trade when everything is just laying there, ready for the taking?  When there is no ownership?

And long ago, I did add atoms to the game that would supposedly enable ownership (walls, doors, locks, and keys).  But they are so expensive to make, and such a burden to use in practice, that people have never been able to build functional ownership systems with these atoms.  If it takes three lifetimes to successfully build a locked bakery before you can actually start trading your bread, your family is going to lose the thread before it ever gets off the ground.

I thought about overhauling the costs of building and locking, but such an overhaul would likely have loads of other side-effects.  And furthermore, one of the biggest problems with "easy" building and locking is lack of consensus.  In other words, if it's easy to lock people out, it's easy to lock people in.  Here come the griefers, building a wall around the whole town and locking the door.  Or maybe even skipping the whole "door" part entirely.  In other words, property rights cannot be claimed unilaterally.  And they aren't, actually, in real life.  If a bunch of people have been using a swimming hole for ages, you can't suddenly walk up to it and say, "It's unclaimed, so it's mine now."  Everyone would collectively object, including physically throwing you out of your own "property" if you were persistent enough.  Thus, we have come full-circle and discovered the philosophical underpinnings of homesteading---homesteading is not quick, unrestricted, or easy for some very good reasons.

So it seems like we need a new atom here.  Something a bit more abstract than walls and doors and locks.  For example, to stake a mining claim on public land in the USA, you literally pound a wooden stake into the ground, nail the lid of a peanutbutter jar to the stake, write your claim on a piece of paper, and screw the paper into an empty jar, attached to the stake, like this:

6zN7MoY.jpg

And most importantly, if other people are working there, they're not going to let you stake your claim, or they're going to remove your claim after you leave.  But the longer your claim goes uncontested by others, the more real it becomes.

This is essentially how the new fences and gates work.  They go through a three-minute proposal phase, where people can see which area of land you intend to box in.  After that, if no one objects, they can be erected, but they are still "shaky" for twenty more minutes.  During that time, shaky fences are easy for anyone to remove.  After that, they become permanent, though they fall apart in an hour if not maintained by someone.  In other words, to claim property, you have to find a spot that no one objects to you claiming, and you have to take care of it long-term.

Gates are owned by whoever builds them, and new owners can be added verbally ("You own this" or "Sam Smith owns this").  Only the owners can open and close the gate.  When the last owner dies, the gate is abandoned and falls apart.  Thus, if you want to keep your gate working long-term, you need to assign a new living owner to it before you croak.

And fences are very cheap to propose and build (and remove!), making them orthogonal to the rest of the resource systems in the game.  They are meant to abstractly represent consensual trans-generational property ownership.

But aside from blocking movement, there is no other explicit concept of ownership in the game.  The land and items inside a fence are not inherently owned, which means that theft and other juicy interactions are still possible.  And one owner who no longer has the support of the rest of the town for their ownership stands no chance.  There's still strength in numbers.  Beheading the queen will unlock the castle.

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#2 2019-04-21 04:52:25

Dodge
Member
Registered: 2018-08-27
Posts: 492

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

A lot of potential for the property update, i really like how it has been implemented easy to make a large area and practical to do BUT with the current system i dont see this becoming more than an RP element/cheap pen, there is no real incentive for property since everyone in the same family is essentially in the same "tribe" and shares everything, sure the smith could lock the smithing area for example and exchange food for tools, but why do that since everything is shared, he would just be RP'ing as smith, there is no real incentive to do it.

But there could be an actual real reason to do it, there could be wars, trades, cooperation, theft etc.

Currently there is no reason for property because villages are way too far appart and since they all die out every 2-3 days max and new villages are made in a brand new area, there is never any scarcity of ressources which means no real reason to have property and protect them.

If villages were relatively close to each other and eve spiral not going into infinity, then eventually they would run out of ressources and would need to either go at war with other villages, trade, steal, cooperate or move out otherwise they would slowly die out, it would happen for real reasons and not just RP going at war or RP trading.

Imo two things have to change to make property really good, eve spiral could go back and forth from the center to 2-3k for example (or any other system that doen't go to infinite) and lifting the ban on respawn should be based on server running time and not play time to avoid situations where you steal from a village then next life get reborn in the village you just stole from (but you could still spawn there if you wanted to).

Limited ressources is what makes the difference between role play and real play, and the proximity with other villages is what allows interaction between them.

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#3 2019-04-21 07:58:27

Amon
Member
From: Under your bed
Registered: 2019-02-17
Posts: 324

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

Dodge wrote:

-//-.

Well I mean a while ago I and a few other users were hapilly milkweedfarming away thanks to these fences, and even giving away rope to those that asked; 'trading' even though we didn't get anything back other than the bloke brought back sheep and we beneffited of it collectively. While some resources aren't good to shut away, resources that are cumbersome to make and are easily wasted for 'junk' make prime candidates. But that's like one of the good usages of them that are intended, they're being used for far more non intended usages, however.


My favourite all time lives are Unity Dawn, who was married to Sachin Gedeon.
If you get named Siddhartha or Shamon, it was probably me. If the name is arabic it was probably me too. I don't like giving kids common/boring/mundane names.

PIES 2.0 <- Pie diversification mod

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#4 2019-04-21 10:32:59

InSpace
Member
Registered: 2018-03-02
Posts: 387

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

Not a fan of the property things, but it is lightyears better than keys

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#5 2019-04-21 10:58:27

Dodge
Member
Registered: 2018-08-27
Posts: 492

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

Amon wrote:
Dodge wrote:

-//-.

Well I mean a while ago I and a few other users were hapilly milkweedfarming away thanks to these fences, and even giving away rope to those that asked; 'trading' even though we didn't get anything back other than the bloke brought back sheep and we beneffited of it collectively. While some resources aren't good to shut away, resources that are cumbersome to make and are easily wasted for 'junk' make prime candidates. But that's like one of the good usages of them that are intended, they're being used for far more non intended usages, however.

Yeah but you were roleplaying as a trader, you did it for the fun of it and to explore the new update, and there is nothing wrong with it, but that's exactly my point, it wasn't for an actual purpose, for a needed reason.

But what if instead of roleplaying as a trader you become a trader because the village needs it, if you dont trade your village will die, if you are not successful in finding an agreement with another town your whole civilisation will die out.

It's the equivalent of playing poker just for fun of playing for 50'000$, if you win you get it all otherwise you lose all your money, will you play both games the same way?

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#6 2019-04-21 11:25:05

Amon
Member
From: Under your bed
Registered: 2019-02-17
Posts: 324

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

Except I was not roleplaying and was genuinely the only person making rope =P and we needed milkweed to make all those buckets and carts, while preventing the rope to be used on stone hoes, traps and the + wasteful bows we don't need.
So yeah as far not needed goes or having no purpose... The other people also did not feel inconvenienced by it.

So yeah this is one resource where the intended purpose works for just dandy.


My favourite all time lives are Unity Dawn, who was married to Sachin Gedeon.
If you get named Siddhartha or Shamon, it was probably me. If the name is arabic it was probably me too. I don't like giving kids common/boring/mundane names.

PIES 2.0 <- Pie diversification mod

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#7 2019-04-21 14:50:54

Spoonwood
Member
Registered: 2019-02-06
Posts: 819

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

I am curious as to how this game will affect rope for tools such as buckets, carts, and sledges (if you get a chance to do so, I ask that you try to upgrade those boxes to sledges since you can walk through a sledge... at least boxes not in the corner of a bakery which don't pose so much of a walking issue).  If, with the playerbase, this ends up making getting rope more difficult I say that the game may as well officially change it's name to 'rope finder'.  Alright, yes, I'm kidding, but getting enough rope for efficient and even necessary tools consists of a persistent issue, as that's what I've heard for a while now, and what I've seen also.  If anyone contests that lack of rope makes for a serious issue, please go ahead and say so, but I have a feeling that everyone in the player base agrees that lack of rope is a problem every town has.  Maybe there just don't exist enough people growing milkweed or going out and getting wild milkweed, I don't know.

Last edited by Spoonwood (2019-04-22 00:54:01)

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#8 2019-04-21 16:34:58

happynova
Member
Registered: 2018-03-31
Posts: 280

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

"Good fences make good neighbors?"  Aha!  That's who Jason was reminding me of all the way through these discussions about fences. He's totally the neighbor from the Robert Frost poem. wink

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#9 2019-04-22 16:00:53

jasonrohrer
Administrator
Registered: 2017-02-13
Posts: 2,094

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

That's poem is a great encapsulation of this update!

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#10 2019-04-22 16:01:39

jasonrohrer
Administrator
Registered: 2017-02-13
Posts: 2,094

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

And yes, I agree that there's not enough scarcity pressure in the game yet to motivate property and trading.  One step at a time.

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#11 2019-04-22 16:28:04

happynova
Member
Registered: 2018-03-31
Posts: 280

Re: Update: Good Fences Good Neighbors

jasonrohrer wrote:

That's poem is a great encapsulation of this update!

I certainly thought so, but then I'm with Frost on the fence being useless and more trouble than it's worth. wink

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