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The 10-Square Myth

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Myll View Drop Down
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    Posted: 20 Apr 2014 at 02:45
Outside of recruiting, this will be my first foray into gameplay dynamics and politics/policies of Illyriad here in the forums.  Know up front that I am challenging the norms of many other long-time players in this game, but remember that I have been here as long as any of you with my main character (anonymous here) and see/know/understand this issue as well as any of you.

First, my primary argument: there is no 10-Square "Rule" in this game - that is a myth that needs to be broken apart and shoved down the throat of Audrey in her awakened state.

There is only a 10-Square "restriction" in this game, coded in by the developers to restrict settlement specifically by the Exodus or Tenaril movement processes, and that restriction is overcome by Sov 5 on the desired tile.  We can ask GM Stormcrow all day long as to "why" this was coded into the game, but the history will only be partly beneficial.

You can Settle a town within 10 squares!!  A Settler can be sent within the 10-square distance and settle a town, so what does this say about the intent of the dev's?  Again, none of these game coding dynamics results in a town "owning" squares around it - so why do we insist in speaking of and labeling a "10-Square Rule" that does not exist?

Okay, so you say your alliance upholds the "10-Square 'Rule'" for your alliance's sake.  Let's be clear on the terminology, and the semantics matters - what your alliance publishes is not a rule, it is an alliance policy.  None of us alliance leaders set rules in the game, we can only try to publish and enforce alliance policy.  So before you flame this post, recognize that.

More terminology: "tradition" - or even "Dogma."  Please look those up in your dictionary of choice.  That's a bit of what we have here in game with the 10-Square "Rule."

Land Sovereignty (not ownership).  We need to first be reminded that Sovereignty as defined means that the area is controlled and free from external influence.  However, a "Sovereign" tile can most certainly be influenced in this game!  If you do not have an army actively camped on a sovereign tile, the "locals" are not chasing off a neutral/enemy harvester, cotter, miner, herbalist, and especially not an enemy army.  Sovereignty, while the game continues to disallow counter-sov claims, is a (for now) permanent label but there is only one thing that sovereignty prevents: Settlement!!  So why do you think this gives you further ownership, when ownership in itself is different than sovereignty?  Sovereignty is the only coded-in labeling system to show a player's claims outside a town.  But - there's no 10-Square restriction to claiming sovereignty!  Think about that - the game coded in a system to claim land anywhere on the map, so long as your army can hold the land for the claim, and so long as you can afford to pay the gold.   

Land Control.  Now this is different, and regardless whether sovereignty does or does not exist on the tile - an Occupying Army can control land in this game.  That control by the army(s) will not last past 14 days, 23 hours and 59 minutes, unless the army is back-filled with another army before that time to continue the process of controlling the land.  Neutral or enemy harvesters are killed on site if they attempt to harvest from the same square an Army is occupying. 

While I am stating the obvious in terms of game dynamics, code, gameplay for many of you, I am putting all this in one thread because the primary argument is that we have a "norm" that is over-stated and misused in this game, to try and tell alliance members, newbs, and the whole community that there is a 10-Square "Rule" - but the rule is a myth.  Each alliance can try to make this a policy, and then fight to uphold their policy, but for the love of pete stop saying there is a 10-Square "Rule" that does not exist!!!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Apr 2014 at 04:22
This has been discussed ad nauseam in other threads.  Nevertheless it is good education for folks who are new to the game to be aware of this topic.

I'll try to find some links to one or more of the past threads where this was discussed.

http://forum.illyriad.co.uk/examining-the-10-square-rule-as-a-cause-of-war_topic5467.html

That's the most recent discussion.  I recall posts on this topic by Harmless? and DLords, among others, but can't locate them in the Politics and Diplomacy section of the forum.  Perhaps the original posters can recall their location?  I might just have missed them.


Edited by Rill - 20 Apr 2014 at 04:31
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote KillerPoodle Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Apr 2014 at 04:47
You can settle within 10 squares.
You can harvest wherever you see fit.
You can send diplomatic attacks against players cities.
You can send armies against troops in the field or against cities themselves.

The question is not whether you believe it to be a 'rule' or an 'alliance policy' - the question is whether you are prepared to deal with whatever response your actions cause....
"This is a bad idea and we shouldn't do it." - endorsement by HM

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote abstractdream Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Apr 2014 at 15:41
I think that another way to say this is: To just state that you (or your alliance) "follow the 10 Square Rule" is enough only up to the point where someone challenges it. Beyond that is where the "friction" comes in. Enjoy!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Hora Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Apr 2014 at 21:40
To my understanding, it simply would be polite to ask, before settling within another players vicinity. Often this players has plans for one certain tile 7 squares away, but wouldn't mind settling another tile only 3 away....

This said, you can do whatever you want, especially when you can back it up with armies. But don't expect good neighbourship when popping up on a square in the middle of another players soon to be city agglomeration =)

Thus said, my "Rule" always was: ask first, get a hearty OK from me, and all's nice and friendly Hug


Edited by Hora - 20 Apr 2014 at 21:42
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Auraya Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2014 at 22:15
The 10 square rule is designed to allow a player ample space to claim sovereignty in the future, as their town develops. Since a 100 population settlement cannot be expected to claim and maintain a full 5 square ring round their city, many alliances adopted the '10 square rule' that was compulsory for exodus/tenaril to extend to settlement. 

As most players only require 3 rings of sov for a 25k population town, many are happy to allow settlements further than 6 squares away (so that both cities can get 3 rings each without hampering each other). Some players may wish to claim further out, especially if there is a particularly nice resource/dolmen/whatever which is why we ask before sticking a city within 10x10. 

It may not be a game mechanic but it is a courtesy that most players observe. Ignore it at your peril. 


Edited by Auraya - 23 Apr 2014 at 22:15
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Myll Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2014 at 22:54
To be clear, my intent for this post is to prove once and for all that there is no 10-Square "Rule" and that we need to start calling it by the correct terminology in game and within our alliances.
 
KillerPoodle, you only reinforced this point, which actually bolsters my argument.  However, your alliance profile still has a hyperlinked "10-Square Rule" to an older discussion on the matter, in which more of the same is mentioned and shows that it is alliance policy and not a rule.
 
I am not trying to specifically make a point about Settlement.  That is only one aspect.  However, Settlement does need at least one follow-up clarification:  Within the game's code, Settlement can never be done on a tile on which another player has claimed Sovereignty.  That is a solid "Rule" if you will.  However, even this could be overcome in the future, when/if counter-sov claiming process is fixed, but then what does it get back to? Armies.  Those with a larger army will be able to claim or counter-claim the sov, and then the land gets controlled by the player who holds it.
 
I say this especially because the same is true already for resources.  Within the land surrounding a town, there is no game coded system to restrict other players from harvesting resources of any type, even when that res is just 1 square outside the town.  The only claim on those resources can be sat on by force, with an army.  Players may choose to play a calm/peaceful route, bumping each other's caravans, or they can attempt to control the res by force with armies.  But - to announce even in your alliance profile an alliance policy about such makes little difference to a player new to the game who shows up harvesting at your doorstep - why?  Because on average, they're not bothering to read your alliance policies, because they're not in your alliance.  I have a bunch of new players in my alliance, so I'm a bit more passionate about this issue now.  There are no divine mineral rights granted within 10-squares of towns, and many of you game veterans need to get over that.  In fact, if we get crowded and struggle for resources due to so many players being in this game - Great! That means the game company likely has more revenue, and we will see Broken Lands that much faster.  Maybe we'll see a duplicated Elgea server one day also.  Maybe the game dev's will make a non-pvp server for those who want armies to bounce off each other.  Regardless, we have the game as it exists now, without even the counter-sov capability yet, but some of you live in this game as control freaks.
 
If anything, many of you game veterans have developed policies and practices that sometimes can turn off many new players to this game.   The first 24-48 hours of gameplay are critical to retention of players for the long term.  I don't particularly like the tutorial system and timing, but it's what we have for now.  I am teaching my new alliance members to be resourceful, do quests, get into the Marketplace and trade, and avoid simply getting resources dumped on them.  All this requires a more open-ended gameplay for them, although they also know an army can show up and kill their harvesters (i.e. they aren't ignorant of risk/reward).  But to simply "say" you own things in the game that aren't coded in is ridiculous - put an army on the ground if you want to control something, otherwise the written policies are rubbish.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Auraya Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2014 at 23:11
"But to simply "say" you own things in the game that aren't coded in is ridiculous - put an army on the ground if you want to control something, otherwise the written policies are rubbish."

Written policies are called diplomacy and I'm afraid it is something you will have to master, if you wish to be a successful alliance leader. Try not to be so dismissive of the finesse required to thrive in Illyriad. This is a social game far more than a military one. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Myll Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2014 at 23:16
In response to Auraya-
You just missed my point totally - the army should already be on the tile, holding the resources, so that a new player sees that and avoids it.  Otherwise, if resources sit on the ground with no army cover, then it is free game for any player to attempt to get, with or without an army.
 
I already understand the diplomacy here, but it's the front-side of diplomacy that you veterans are missing - you need to show and display ownership first (i.e. harvest with armies present to control resources), not hope it happens with words.
 
Otherwise, be satisfied with caravan bumps.
Myll


Edited by Myll - 23 Apr 2014 at 23:25
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Auraya Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Apr 2014 at 23:40
If you're talking about basic resources on the map, I'm just going to chuckle and leave this conversation. I'm talking about settling within 10x10. Harvesting within 5 squares of a player should also be avoided:

a) Because the player may have killed the hides/animal parts there but need the troops to kill more NPCs - you can only have 5 armies so occupying all kills is not always possible.

b) Because over-harvesting a herb patch near to someone's city is a VERY bad thing to do (and yes, this has happened to me).

c) Because quite often your skinners/miners/herbalists will be killed by players replacing their armies and those are costly to replace. 

Claiming more than 5 squares for harvesting is silly. The 10 square rule is designed for TWO cities to both have 5 squares each, the idea that one city can claim a full 10 square radius harvesting rights is laughable. 
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