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  1. #1
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    Since the list has been so quiet lately (!), I decided to start a new
    thread.
    IMC, we have found that nobody hardly ever spends Regency points to negate
    another`s action. It is simply not efficient. The other character starts
    with an advantage of 11 chances in 20 for success, so in order to negate his
    action, it is much more expedient to simply make an action of your own to
    negate his.

    Example: Boeruine tries an Agitate action against Taline. This action has a
    base 55% chance of success. If Taline is to negate this action, she must
    spend 11 RP - and Boeruine spent only 1 RP, 1 GB instigating the action. In
    most ways, it is more efficient for Taline to counter with an Agitate action
    of her own.

    My solution to this problem is that RP are twice as effective when used to
    negate an action. Thus, it would only cost Taline 6 RP to negate Boeruine`s
    agitation, and Boeruine would have to spend further RP on a 2:1 ratio with
    Taline in order to be effective.

    What is the experience of you who have gamemastered games with a high number
    of PC domains? My campaign involves a lot of rather passive NPC realms, and
    this may influence my line of thinking . In a game with more players, the
    number of actions that you have might be more of a limitation.

    /Carl

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  2. #2
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    On Tue, 2002-12-03 at 21:48, Carl Cramér wrote:
    > Since the list has been so quiet lately (!), I decided to start a new
    > thread.
    > IMC, we have found that nobody hardly ever spends Regency points to negate
    > another`s action. It is simply not efficient. The other character starts
    > with an advantage of 11 chances in 20 for success, so in order to negate his
    > action, it is much more expedient to simply make an action of your own to
    > negate his.

    (Yeah, some revision would be nice ...)
    Depends on how many RP you got.
    But why do you see this as a problem?

    >
    > Example: Boeruine tries an Agitate action against Taline. This action has a
    > base 55% chance of success. If Taline is to negate this action, she must
    > spend 11 RP - and Boeruine spent only 1 RP, 1 GB instigating the action. In
    > most ways, it is more efficient for Taline to counter with an Agitate action
    > of her own.

    But what if Talinie Agitates against Boeruine? (flip/flop)

    In that case, Boeruine (with RP to burn relative to Talinie), can afford
    to counter without real penalty.

    Boeruine has 60 RP each turn compared to Talinie`s 30. And even less
    domain actions. This is a nett advantage of 30 RP - more than enough to
    counter one or two actions.

    I don`t allow RP to accumulate (use it or lose it - stops both stingy
    regents and avoids hefty RP build-up), but let`s say that you do.
    Boeruine need only save 15 RP a turn to have a significant war chest of
    120 RP after four turns - he can then go full out on attack and defense
    with a massive 4x RP advantage - not only making all his own actions
    80+%, but countering the counter-action of Talinie back to <=10%.


    >
    > My solution to this problem is that RP are twice as effective when used to
    > negate an action. Thus, it would only cost Taline 6 RP to negate Boeruine`s
    > agitation, and Boeruine would have to spend further RP on a 2:1 ratio with
    > Taline in order to be effective.

    Again, what if Talinie agitates against Boeruine? (flip/flop)

    Although, doubling the RP in defense aided Talinie in the first example,
    in the reverse situation you`ve just made life even harder.

    Restricting the doubling effect to defense only creates a pretty static
    situation, i.e. If Boeruine were agitating in a Talinie province,
    Donalls RP spent in defense would count for double, whereas if Boeruine
    were agitating in Fhouruile (in response to a prior agitate by Donalls
    for example) then Donalls could not claim double value.

    e.g. Boeruine v Lindholme
    is 10 + 5(province defense) + 3(law defense) - 2 (law attack)
    = 16 (base) (20% chance)

    whereas Donalls counter-agitate in the same province is
    10 + 5 (province) - 4 (temple) - 3 (law) = 8 (base) (60% chance)

    Donalls is already three times more likely to succeed in a counter move,
    and can ignore one shift in loyalty in any case. Boeruine would have to
    spend an extra 8 RP/GB to achieve equality, not even considering the
    ignored shift.

    >
    > What is the experience of you who have gamemastered games with a high number
    > of PC domains? My campaign involves a lot of rather passive NPC realms, and
    > this may influence my line of thinking . In a game with more players, the
    > number of actions that you have might be more of a limitation.

    But what are you trying to achieve?
    (i) Make the regents spend more; or
    (ii) Make it easier to defend than attack

    Against (ii), I`d argue that the advantage is still with the defenders,
    and that to give them greater advantage will only slow the game down
    even more.

    However, I do think 1 RP and 1 GB is a pretty cheap action. And, I`m
    unimpressed that Boeruine`s 8 GB/RP to achieve equality is a fixed
    barrier in that, regardless of Talinie`s spending Boeruine need only
    spend 8 RP/GB more -- for, as we have seen AB has a 30 RP advantage (and
    heaps of GB too).

    With the doubling effect in play, changing Boeruine`s difference for
    equality to 8 + [TD`s outlay], i.e. If Donalls spends 10 RP/GB in
    defence, AB must spend 28 RP/GB for a widening gap of 8 + 10 = 18.

    If Donalls agitates v Fhouruile
    10 + 3 (province) + 3 (law) - 2 (temple) = 14 (30%)
    Whereas AB`s counter-agitate action is
    10 + 3 (prov) - 3 (law) - 3 (law**double dip) = 7 (or 10)
    (Personally, the double-dipping on law when agitating in your favor
    rankles, especially as law also allows you to ignore shifts - in this
    case two of them!)

    But now doubling is crippling to TD`s agitate - it`s not even worth the
    nuisance value.

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  3. #3
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    On Tue, 2002-12-03 at 21:48, Carl Cramér wrote:
    > Since the list has been so quiet lately (!), I decided to start a new
    > thread.

    pot-stirrer

    > IMC, we have found that nobody hardly ever spends Regency points to negate
    > another`s action. It is simply not efficient. The other character starts
    > with an advantage of 11 chances in 20 for success, so in order to negate his
    > action, it is much more expedient to simply make an action of your own to
    > negate his.
    >
    > Example: Boeruine tries an Agitate action against Taline. This action has a
    > base 55% chance of success. If Taline is to negate this action, she must
    > spend 11 RP - and Boeruine spent only 1 RP, 1 GB instigating the action. In
    > most ways, it is more efficient for Taline to counter with an Agitate action
    > of her own.
    >

    >
    > What is the experience of you who have gamemastered games with a high number
    > of PC domains? My campaign involves a lot of rather passive NPC realms, and
    > this may influence my line of thinking . In a game with more players, the
    > number of actions that you have might be more of a limitation.

    [This isn`t a proposal - it`s an example of what mechanics `could` be
    used - as a comparison]

    A radically different equation for the resolution of domain actions
    could be given as:
    f_success() = 10 * ( 2 - [attack strength]/[defense strength] )
    with the condition that:
    [attack strength] is always <= [defense strength]
    which determines success numbers in relative rather than absolute terms.


    Costs are also relative to the difficult and size. Both the initial cost
    and the cost to adjust the success value by 1 point in the attackers
    favor are equal to the [defense strength]. Conversely, the defender need
    only spend [attack strength] or 1 whichever is higher.

    Restricting the modification to a maximum of +1 or -1 also adds a twist;
    a bit like poker: you can `call` your opponent or you can keep chucking
    into the pot to drain his +1 modifier.

    For Agitate (against):
    [defense strength] = [province rating]
    + [law holding of province regent]
    [attack strength] = [holding size of agitating regent]

    For Agitate (for):
    [defense strength] = [province rating]
    [attack strength] = [holding of agitating regent]

    Thus for Lindholme/Talinie:
    Success Numbers:
    (i) AB would be 18 (compared to orig rules 16)
    (ii) TD would be 14 (compared to orig rules 8)
    Costs:
    (i) AB 8 RP/GB TD 2 RP/TD
    (ii) TD 5 RP/GB AB 3 RP/TD

    And for Fhouruile/Boeruine
    (iii) TD would be 15 (compared to orig rules 14)
    (iv) AB would be 10 (compared to orig rules 7 or 10)

    Costs:
    (iii) TD 6 RP/GB AB 3 RP/GB
    (iv) AB 3 RP/GB TD 3 RP/TD

    In example (i) AB is agitating at a success value of 18 (not too good),
    and TD can make it 19 for just 2 RP/GB. To get back to 18, AB would need
    to spend another 8 GB/RP (on top of his original stake) - just how far
    can he push his 30 RP advantage? (not too far). It`s more beneficial
    (and cheaper too) for TD to defend than to counter-agitate.

    If AB does succeed, (and TD can`t for some reason ignore the shift) he`s
    left with example (ii) - now it`s costing him more to agitate than to
    defend (5 RP/GB compared to 2), and AB can exert pressure with his 30 RP
    advantage (and spending 3 for every 5 TD spends - he can exhaust TD`s 30
    RP with just 18 of his own) -- the success value is likely to be 15.

    Now when TD attacks in Fhouruile (example (iii)), AB is best off
    defending with 3 RP/GB to make the success number 16. This is better
    odds than AB got in (i), and TD would be on the bad side of a bidding
    war - so he should accept that and `call` (make the roll).

    The AB counter-agitate ( example iv) (an even more unlikely scenario
    given the ability to ignore two shifts in loyalty), is an opportunity
    for TD to bleed AB of RP/GB, although he`ll run out of RP/GB first -
    it`s still an effective nuisance drain on AB.


    ***
    Such a system would make Agitate less likely to succeed - and thus
    possibly a more stagnant game dynamic. But, it also makes it more
    difficult to defend against -- you can`t move the probability of success
    down to 5% just because you have a wad of RP/GB.

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  4. #4
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    Hello,

    ----- Original Message -----
    From: "Carl Cramér" <carl.cramer@HOME.SE>
    > IMC, we have found that nobody hardly ever spends Regency points to negate
    > another`s action. It is simply not efficient. The other character starts
    > with an advantage of 11 chances in 20 for success, so in order to negate
    his
    > action, it is much more expedient to simply make an action of your own to
    > negate his.

    My players put their best efforts to negate another people actions
    (agitate, contest,...). The reason is that they have much less actions than
    gb and rp ;) If they used their actions to counter another people effects,
    their domains wouldn´t advance very much. And they have lots of extra
    problems to handle, not only someone agitating them. That´s what happens in
    my campaign. Actions become very important if there´s "movement" in their
    domains or in neighbouring domains.

    Greetings,

    Vicente

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  5. #5
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    I think this isn`t a case of too much RP, but rather too little RP.
    Especially as compared to how many actions they have. If the NPC realms
    were more active, it would be impossible to respond to every rival action
    with a counter action. Some actions would require counter spending of RP.

    While its true that in the abstract 1 RP and 1 GB give you a 55% chance of
    success, but it almost never works that way in the final calculations. If
    Boeruine Agitates against Talinie at Seaport, sure it may well work out they
    way its described above if Torele doesn`t throw in his holdings. But
    consider Lindholme, where AB can add his law holdings (2) but TD can add her
    law (3) and temple (4) holdings. AB has a modified 30% chance of success.
    If TA supports TD, its 20%. And this assumes AB is playing to TD`s strength
    (she gets a free Agitate).

    What if AB is contesting the NIT`s (0) temple in Seaport? What if AB is
    attempting a Diplomacy action with TA to gain his support in upcoming build,
    rule, contest, or agitate actions?

    If Thurazor and the Five Peaks are sniping at holdings too (just throwing
    out a RP to contest actions in the hopes of rolling well, but avoiding any
    bidding wars) what then?

    Kenneth Gauck
    kgauck@mchsi.com

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  6. #6
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    From: "Peter Lubke" <peterlubke@OPTUSNET.COM.AU>

    > But what if Talinie Agitates against Boeruine? (flip/flop)

    If Boeruine is in conflict with Taline, Taline is basically dead unless
    Boeruine has other enemies. But Boeruine has plenty of enemies, so this is
    not usually a problem.

    Actually, this might be a bigger problem for a large nation with many
    enemies than for a small nation with one larger enemy, because a group of
    smaller enemies each has a full allotment of Domain Actions, each of which
    has a base 55% chance of success. Unless the larger nation can use it`s
    greater supply of RP to counter these actions, it is shot.


    From: "Kenneth Gauck" <kgauck@MCHSI.COM>

    > While its true that in the abstract 1 RP and 1 GB give you a 55% chance of
    > success, but it almost never works that way in the final calculations.
    >

    It does not really matter what the exact percentages are - the fact remains
    that you get a free percentagemerely for doing the action, and this puts the
    defender in a bad situation.

    > If Thurazor and the Five Peaks are sniping at holdings too (just throwing
    > out a RP to contest actions in the hopes of rolling well, but avoiding any
    > bidding wars) what then?
    >

    This is exactly the problem as outlined above. The target nation would
    quickly run out of RP to defend itself. In fact, any nation with five
    enemies who concertedly agitated against it would probably suffer
    nation-wide rebellion, even if the agitating nations spent no extra RP and
    the defending nation spent all its RP on defense. This applies even if the
    defending nation has a greater RP gathering ability than all the five
    contesting nations put together.

    It is a question of numbers (many nations) vs. power (many RP), and right
    now power is seriously weak.

    The thing that happened IMC was that one PC church simultaneosly contested
    ALL the holdings of a NPC church (yes, their holdings were entwined) - and
    did so repeatedly until the first church was dead. Contest holding is a
    realm action! I reflexively spent the target church`s RP in defence, and the
    only result was that I ran out of RP and could not do either Rule or Contest
    actions on a large scale to strike back. Bad rules or simply bad tactics?

    /Carl


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  7. #7
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    As I first mentioned on Sunday, July 22, 2001 9:01 PM (New RP Effect), I use a linear progression of RP costs, so that RP bidding gets much more expensive. (n+(n+1)...)
    I couln`t do that if the existence of holdings didn`t counter much of the advantage of agressive action. Even in little Talinie, TD control over much law and most temples, reduces success chances to less than a third. A few well spent RP can lower the chance even farther. I don`t ever recomend spending to zero, with standard RP bidding or my own modified bidding. Its just too inexpensive (in terms of RP and GB) to counter an attack with another action. TD gets a free agitate, and rule can be a realm action too. The reason I don`t recomend ignoring bidding and just waiting for the counter action, is that I regard actions are far more dear than a few GB and RP. With the assistance of holdings, I have seen a few RP totally block attacks and allow the player to use that gained action to do the very same thing to the other guy.

    As for Peter`s suggestion that all RP dissipate at the end of the season, I agree that all politics is driven by the slogan :"What have you done for me lately". Even so I presume enough gratitude to suppose only a 3 month half-life for RP. Every season I cut your RP`s in half, just before adding the new season. The only way I have ever seen players accumulate RP`s this way is by using a character actions to solve problems, which strikes me as about right.

    Kenneth Gauck
    kgauck@mchsi.com

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