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  1. #1
    Senior Member arpig2's Avatar
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    Mineral resources - a new domain action

    I have been tinkering with various domain actions and have come up with the following action for finding and exploiting mineral resources.
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    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    It's interesting, and the list of different types of mineral by province type is very nice, but I'm slightly concerned about the impact on game balance.

    Increasing the number of trade routes by 50% and doubling trade route income (precious metals) for instance means tripling the province income from trade routes - that could be exceptionally lucrative.

    Effectively you are building a structure of varying quality (higher quality = higher DDC and higher cost) over a period of time, and then obtaining a return on it.

    The cost is 20 GB for a major mine, but in practice I'd expect most of them to be in remote/rugged areas so say 40 GB, even so you aren't looking at a huge asset cost compared to other structures - it would only get a regent a L2 castle.

    But that's a tweaking issue, I don't know how much income you give trade routes to estimate whether the return on capital that a regent would get is unbalancing - and given the 2e trade route (and brecht box trade ability) possibly the income is supposed to be incredible for trade routes

    I'd wonder about expanding possibilities - so perhaps a good quality ore could make it easier to muster elite army units (better weapons and armour), add a bonus to 'relevant' diplomacy, allow trade with a wider range of recipients, etc rather than increasing income, or adding to RP collection to reflect the known wealth, and thus opportunities for patronage, etc.

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    It certainly is a nice idea, but it delves too much in detail. This domain action only is a 7-page essay, it should be kept as simple as possible. And yes, game balance is an important issue.
    Tribes of the Heartless Wastes cover silver mining in Melyy. I see an actual domain action as something that evolves from it. Perhaps give each category a certain dice for income and, of course, introduce some penalties if it goes bust.
    Rey M. - court wizard of Tuarhievel

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    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    I'd actually like to see more 'structures', be they mines, terraced farmland, canals, rare breeding herds, etc.

    I think though that resources go one of two ways.

    If they add to income (GB or RP) or benefit an action, then they are effectively structures and should fit in with those rules. The exact type of resource is then fluff but without fluff the game is somewhat lifeless.

    Alternately they can grant extra abilities - trade between otherwise similar terrain, new unit types, etc, in which case you could use ad hoc rules (as with Melyy's silver rush and the Varsk ranches) or use structure-type rules.

    Either way as a balance-freak that would be key for me, alternatively though you could use a resource as an adventure/diplomacy McGuffin without any long-term game balance need, i.e. a shadow portal that allows rapid travel to and from various locations could be fought over for military/trade reasons, a metoer strike zone might allow the production of mystical equipment for a limited time - with everyone wanting a piece of the divine providence / mystical metal / etc.

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    Introducing structures into game?
    Could be interesting, but wouldn't it take a lot of engineering to fit into game? And wouldn't it take away a focus from the main goals in the game?

    I like it when the game has options. Certainly mining for metal and then upgrading the armor of one's troops could be a nice addition, but I wonder if it'll cause a headache for everybody when trying to calculate the income of all those structures?

    It works great in an online game, the income or production of a mine or a logging camp is calculated by computer so you don't need to worry about it. This may work too, but it would be a lot easier if there was an app to do the math.

    And another thing, the amount of work for DM while running the rest of the realms, I don't know how much it would be fun for them.

    The conclusion is: I'm not against it. I've played campaigns with income from structures, but it was really a locally based campaign, not a realm based. And it was fun, we've collected income/tax from peasants, citizens, small traders, large traders. We've built logging camps, mining sites, trade routes, bridges, various structures, ships, etc. Payed maintenance for this and that, calculated birth/death rates. Raised troops, 20 soldiers per unit, trained archers, footman, cavalry. But that's all. Fitting all that into a standard BR campaign could be a lot of paper work, IMO.

    So, introduction to various structures should be kept to small numbers and have a degree of simplicity, if you want the game to run smoothly.
    Rey M. - court wizard of Tuarhievel

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    Site Moderator AndrewTall's Avatar
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    "Keep it simple" does have a lot to say for itself, but if someone wants to add a structure to their domain then they should be willing to track the effect and whatnot -and they can add a lot of flavour and options for a smaller realm.

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    Ehrshegh of Spelling Thelandrin's Avatar
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    Solmyr's Enothril PBEM games had some structures in them and, from there, Empire's Twilight, Reign, Shards of a Broken Crown etc. have all had structures too. For what it's worth, this is the domain assets page in use at the end of Empire's Twilight.

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    Well, if it blends into the game, why not. As long as it's not a tedious task.
    Rey M. - court wizard of Tuarhievel

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    I think buildings/structures make sense in a game that is purely played in the domain level (like most PbeMs), because if not the strategic level is too simple.

    I suppose it also adds to this that we have better tools today to track all this stuff nowadays (computers), and most of us have played lots of strategy games that have the concept of buildings/structures.

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