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Greg W
10-02-2002, 22:26:36
As mentioned in DS's thread on a King game, in an effort to get myself up to speed with the latest versions of VB/COM/DCOM/SQL Server and other assorted products/technologies, I have decided to make a game. And seeing as there is no game that I could find out there that is based on Pendragon, I thought that might be a good place to start. Pendragon is a PnP (Pen and Paper for the uninitiated) RPG based in Arthurian Britain. From memory (it's been a while) you play a young man, just knighted, and granted a plot of land (a hectare or acre, not sure which) and a manor hall.

From this humble beginning you can basically build your reputation and honour, gain more land (via marriage, occasionally conquest, and other ways), and go off on Quests (they seemed to be big back then) or Adventures. A reasonable part of the game was managing your estates, building your manor hall into a motte and bailey, then a keep, castle, etc. You could attend tourneys and joust with other knights hoping to win a prize from the lady of the tourney (and a prize of course), you could enter the general melee (last standing wins a prize), you could hold and attend hunts. Basically all the stereotypical things that you see on medieval movies about Lords, Knights and stuff.

I thought that rather than focus on just Arthurian Britain, I would make it slightly more generic, for two reasons. One, I don't want it to actually be Pendragon, just inspired by it. And two, I will probably want to include some things not necessarily in keeping with Arthurian times. Oh, three I suppose is it keeps me from even attempting to keep it 100% true to history/mythology, which would save me heaps of boring research. I know a little about history, bit just from reading novels and watching movies, my studies were in more ancient terms. If by some weird fluke it ever gets picked up by a publisher :lol: I can then make it 100% accurate.

The aim of this thread is to get some ideas, feedback, and just outline what I am going to do. Also if I ever get anything ready for release, I can use you all as guinea-pigs, er, beta testers. :D Plus I figure that if I can steal ideas from DS in his thread, I may as well let him return the favour by giving him a thread to steal my ideas from. :D

God, I babble on, don't I? :lol:

As a general note, a feature that I really want to focus on is the good lord/bad lord idea. For every opportunity that you have, you can act in a nasty way, or a good, kind way. For instance, floods ruin your crops for the year. A good Lord would forgive his peasants their taxes, or part thereof. An evil lord would beat them to get them to work harder. A middle of the road approcah might be to let them off half their taxes, but delay the second part until the next year. Or something like that.

I don't want to try and outline my entire thought process at once, so I'll do this in stages, outlining a portion of the game as I go. I'll post the first one sometime later today. :)

Greg W
11-02-2002, 02:13:06
To Conquer or to Manage?

One design issue that I have been pondering over is whether to make this a "conquer by beating the snot out of your neighbours" game, or a more sim/management style game.

Basically it will be a mix of RPG and TBS. A lot of TBS (build your castle and rule your village/town/city, manage peasants, men-at-arms, handle disputes with neighbouring lords, etc), thrown in with a bit of RPG adventuring (going off and saving damsels in distress, slaying foul beasts and the like), and basically all the stuff that historically Knights did. I'm starting off by aiming at sim-Knight, but if I get too ambitious and try and put too many features in, I'll see what I want to cut out. :D

At the moment I am a little undecided how I want to do the whole "expand your realm" thing. If I try and stick by the methods of the middle ages, at the start at least you're not going to be going off and beating anyone up (possible exception is land held by monsters, and being dragged off to wars with your leige lord), the way to get land will be via clearing more acres of forest and being given more land by your leige lord for being a good knight (pun not intended). However if you eventually get up to the stage where you are a Lord with vassals yourself (and no, I have not even looked at how that might happen - yet - though I have a few vague ideas floating around), then indeed you might go off leading armies against your enemies.

The whole thing being that, just like in the middle ages, most people have an overlord (except the king of course), who generally frowns upon beating your rivals up too much (a little beating up is always okay though - just don't weaken the country too much). The main time there were big wars in England was of course when the king died, or there was no king. Or of course the whole rebellion thing. :D

Thinking about it too, I may very sell set it in a period when the king has been killed. Maybe a large portion of the nobles too. Makes it a bit easier to gain land if there's a lot up for grabs, rather than a well-settled empire where there'd be very little chance of land changing hands. However I must admit that initially I was thinking more along the lines of a reasonable settled England (aka Pendragon), where the focus would not be on gaining land via tactical combat as much as it would be about managing your castle and surrounds, with a bit of adventuring thrown in. Hmm, which way to go, which way to go...

At the moment the design is still very vague, so don't go asking too many details... :D

Thoughts/comments?

Funkodrom
11-02-2002, 15:10:03
It'd be great to really be able to play as a bad guy and not have it count against you.

Beta1
11-02-2002, 15:22:38
did I just miss something or did this become the "program your own dark ages game" forum?

:)


If your not careful I'll join in and we can have a 3 way idea steal!!!

what sort of graphic are you looking at? are we talking true 3d, tiberian sun style 3d, BG style sprites?, good-old isometric? I guess your talking top down/god cam rather than 1st/3rd.

I wonder how long it would take to knock up a simple sim-castle/manor in DB.... or blitz for that matter.

Qaj the Fuzzy Love Worm
11-02-2002, 18:20:07
Any reason that this couldn't be web-based, like Netropolis? I would think the TBS nature of the game would be well served by a bunch of ASP-driven databases and some kind of timed server. makes multiplayer easier to code for, provides an elegant interface, and keep the world moving providing you with an incentive to keep playing.

The biggest drawback of the above is that you can't sell it as a stand-alone product and make a fortune from it :)

Greg W
12-02-2002, 01:29:05
Originally posted by MikeH
It'd be great to really be able to play as a bad guy and not have it count against you. My thoughts on the matter was that I was going to have an internal measure of your popularity with your populace (probably multiple counters for varying groups, both internal and external), as well as a measure of how feared you are (and various others). As such, be as mean to the little peasants as you want, but you damned well better keep a tight rein on them or they'll run away, revolt (peasants are always revolting) or some other act of defiance.

For instance, one "event" that could occur is that a peasant runs away. Now, peasants are most likely free people (as in they're not slaves, not that they cost nothing), so there's really no law that says that you can do whatever you like to them. Then again, there's really nobody riding around policing the law either. So, a peasant runs away, usually because he dislikes you a lot, and you have to decide what to do.

You could hunt him down like an animal and slay him (there or hang him in town), this will raise your fear factor alarmingly when word spreads.

You could figure that you still need him to work for you, so you hunt him down, beat him up a bit, and return him home. This would also raise your fear factor somewhat, though not to the same extent as if you killed him.

If you try and hunt him down and fail, this will actually lower your fear factor somewhat, as the peasants get the idea that they too could escape.

You could also just let him go. This will lower your fear factor quite considerably.

And I suppose I need a good option too. That I suppose would be to track him down, and be nice to him, find out what's wrong, and seek to redress it. Or talk to the townspeople and try and find out what's wrong, and fix it. I think I like the latter version better. After all, he may just have randomly run away to get away from a nagging wife or somesuch, you never know. ;)
Originally posted by Beta1
what sort of graphic are you looking at? are we talking true 3d, tiberian sun style 3d, BG style sprites?, good-old isometric? I guess your talking top down/god cam rather than 1st/3rd.Hmm, right now I am thinking something HOMMish. Basically cos I have a book telling me how to draw screens that way in VB. :DOriginally posted by Beta1
I wonder how long it would take to knock up a simple sim-castle/manor in DB.... or blitz for that matter.Pardon my ignorance, but what are Blitz and DB? I presume some sort of gamemaker?Originally posted by Qaj
Any reason that this couldn't be web-based, like Netropolis? I would think the TBS nature of the game would be well served by a bunch of ASP-driven databases and some kind of timed server. makes multiplayer easier to code for, provides an elegant interface, and keep the world moving providing you with an incentive to keep playing.

The biggest drawback of the above is that you can't sell it as a stand-alone product and make a fortune from it :)Other than the fact that I have ANFI about how to draw graphics on a webpage (and I mean how to actually draw graphics, not just how to show a bmp/gif/jpg etc), there's no real reason that it couldn't be done that way. Oh, well, except that I'd have to try and find somewhere to host it that supported ASP, SQL Server, MTS, IIS, basically the entire MS Internet suite. My most recent project was in fact writing the ASP pages to a business app (COM objects running on NT box under MTS with a DB2 UDB backend), so I am fairly conversant with utilising ASP under those circumstances.

Plus of course the fact that I couldn't sell it for craploads of cash. :D

Greg W
12-02-2002, 02:31:21
The game system overview

The basic game system will be event driven, based on random events, various internal measures (aka the "fear" factor mentioned above), and some that the user can set off.

The monetary system

I better touch on this briefly here, as this will effect a lot of what you do. One of the main aims is to make more money in the game, so that you can build bigger and better stuff, and afford to keep more men. Money will be simply represented by gold. Most of your gold will come from taxes paid for by your peasants, and later on in the game, from various mercantile types and from your vassals. Money paid for by peasants obviously won't be in the form of gold, it will be chickens, cows, grain and stuff. However I am not going to force you to take those chickens and cows and sell them to make gold, so I'll just simply have your taxes paid in gold. You'll have to imagine the farmers giving you chickens and cows if you really want the authentic feel. ;)

Most of your income (initially anyway) will be based on land taxes from your peasants, as they grow grain and raise animals. Now, these figures aren't exact, they're just an example (but feel free to tell me what you think would be good figures :D), but here's how it will work:

5 peasants can farm one acre. One acre produces 50 gold in income every year. The 5 peasants need to eat approx 20 gold worth of food every year. You can then tax them for whatever is left over, leaving them as much as you want to, or even taxing them past what they need to survive if you want to be a real mean bastard. Say for instance a happy medium is taxing them 25 gold, leaving them 5 gold (1 each) to buy clothes and other assorted stuff. Now, gold is actually fairly rareish, so that 1 gold is really a reasonable amount. :D

Now, from the 25 that you are taxing them, you need to feed yourself and your family, your retainers and such. Now, we've seen that a peasant eats 4 gold worth of food per year, but they're simple folk with simple meals. You're a lord, and your family expects to be eating better than that. So, we're going to say that each member of your family will eat, oh, 6-8 gold worth per year, let's say. And anyone else in the castle will eat approx 5 gold worth per year. that would be soldiers, maids and other assorted hirelings. So you can see already that with only 25 gold per year per acre, you're going to need a lot of acres to build a large estate and have a big family with lots of servants. Plus you stilll have to pay your staff something. :D

Oh, one thing too, the actual amount of taxes gathered will vary somewhat, based on your skills at managing your estate, and just plain random events such as floods and bumper crops. Thus, if you have lousy skills at managing an estate, you better either have a partner that will do so for you, or hire a steward.

Events that the user sets in motion

So, one obvious thing to do is monitor your treasury, and set your tax rate. Reasonably simple, but it will look a little like a spreadsheet.

Building. Ah, don't we all love to build. I will definately allow expansion of your initial manor hall. First step would be a motte and bailey castle. Basically a big mound of dirt with an (optional and costly) ditch in front, and wooden walls. The manor hall resides within the walls at this point. I am goign to have to do some research on castles though as I am not all that familiar with the variants between a motte and bailey castle and the classic castle that we all think of. Feel free to pass on any sagely advice. :D

And of course all these upgrades cost money, they don't come free (even if it's just in lost productivity because your peasants are building your walls rather than tilling the fields.

What else to build? Well, I am in two minds about whether to let you build things like mills, taverns, markets, and the like, or to let tham happen as random events (based in large measures on the population size, number of acres utilised and thus grain grown). On the one hand, allowing you to build them gives you more control, but on the other hand, I have no idea if this was how it actually happened, or whether a peasant just came up and offered to start running a mill if you helped him build it. I am leaning towards allowing you to build certain buildings (such as a mill), but not others (such as taverns).

Oh, and of course you have armour, a horse and weapons to buy/upgrade all the time.

Clearing land. As you can probably figure, land is probably one of the most important things you own, as it creates most of your wealth. So of course you can get your peasants to clear more of it. This will again cost you somewhat, as those peasants are not out growing food for you.

With more land of course you need more peasants. Some will appear naturally (peasants are randy little buggers after all), based on how healthy they are. Personally I don't see giving the user an option to buy more peasants is a really good idea. IMHO Lords didn't just wander around the countryside buying people off each other. An evil lord of course could always go capture some, but that's another story.

You can hold a hunt. This will raise the morale of your people (if you share it of course), and give you a chance to improve your hunting skills. Could also provide for some death scenes (wild boar mauls your eldest son) and other assorted little adventures, like discovering ruins deep int he woods, woodland beings and the like.

You can host a tourney. This will be a somewhat expensive event, but will raise morale and improve your fame. In a tourney you could enter the jousting, the archery (for shame, knights don't use peasant's weapons) or enter the general melee.

You can go off and adventure. Basically leave your lands and go out and do "stuff". Go to war with enemies, fight monsters, explore ruins, go on quests, and such. The RPG side of the coin. Details on this are somewhat vague atm, I haven't paid a whole lot of thought to this side of the game. But remember that while you're off adventuring, gaining riches and glory, your estates are being run by someone that ain't you. ;)

Venom
12-02-2002, 02:32:24
Hmmm I'd really like to read this thread but it's gone WAAAAY past my reading limit.

Roland
12-02-2002, 12:52:54
Sounds interesting. I'm 110% clueless on programming such a thingie, but for history and econ stuff, my two pfennigs:

At the moment I am a little undecided how I want to do the whole "expand your realm" thing. If I try and stick by the methods of the middle ages, at the start at least you're not going to be going off and beating anyone up (possible exception is land held by monsters, and being dragged off to wars with your leige lord), the way to get land will be via clearing more acres of forest and being given more land by your leige lord for being a good knight (pun not intended).

The unsettled land was either seen as owned by noone, or as belonging to the king. So on the first one, you'd have a rush for land with your "neighbours"; on the second one, you'd need to persuade the king, either through good military service, money, whatever.... or a middle version, if you have the means to settle it, the king will grant you a junk.

One method to settle land was to grant better conditions to the farmers; don't know if this is too complex, but that was especially true in more difficult land areas like the Alps (consequently, most peasants there were free and even had the right to carry arms, like in central switzerland, Tyrol...). They weren't bought or sold without the lan, though (legally, only the land and their obligation to farm it was sold).

Another factor is fertality and mortality; from about 1000-1300, europe's population doubled or tripled. But that boils down to a miniscule growth rate per year. If you want realism, I'd put emphasis on migration.

To expand, you may want to pick a single-heir system - the other sons simply have to move on. If you have land, good. If not, they leave. The disadvantage in retaining them otherwise is to split land, which decreases productivity and the surplus you can draw from them. Apropos, you'd start with 10 % for the church and maybe 10 % for your overlords; you can get between maybe 10-30 %. You could also buy off the rights of the church - costs you now, increases your inflows down the road.

For buildings and maintaining buildings you could hire professionals, or let it do your peasants. In the latter case, it increases your draw of resources from them. Overtaxing, and you get rebellion, starvation, and likely trouble with your overlord who usually would not want to see his income disrupted.

About gold... if possible make it an option. Most initial obligations (labour, food, wood etc) were over time replaced with money, but that should be an option. If you draw natural resources, you should have an option for automatic-marketing though.

Same thing with your own duties. Pay scutum (Schildgeld, what's that in english) or go yourself with your followers. First option you can build in quiet, second option you gain some brownie points to be "promoted" (if things go well; war was a random business at the time).

What about towns ? People funded shitloads of towns as commercual, political and spiritual centers. If you're big enough and up far enough the feudal ladder, you could do this. You have to grant autonomy, but still get some taxes and have a more reliable market for your peasants' products. Also your peasants won't move away to other towns, but into your town and become craftsmen etc.

However if you eventually get up to the stage where you are a Lord with vassals yourself (and no, I have not even looked at how that might happen - yet - though I have a few vague ideas floating around), then indeed you might go off leading armies against your enemies.

If you start with a relatively losely settled land, you could be promoted to count once you reach a certain economic clout. You then could have the option to have your own vassals, or be modern and have hired administrators for your land. As count you can found towns, and prove yourself as a leader in war. Next step would be duke where you have a province. Then you could become a candidate in a nice little war of succession (you'd have to wait though - killing the king should draw a hefty disadvantage in the fight :D).

To expand on the hunt and tourney idea, adventure could also be to join a crusade and make some bounty if you're lucky. Those knightly things would also expand your feudal PR rating, maybe giving bonusses like good marriage (ie one with a lot of land, not necessarily with a lot of... ya know), or to be appointed heir by a hairless... I mean, heirless (?) lord etc.

Dragons and stuff ? Not really my thing..

Ok, enough for know. I can blah on if it is interesting to you....

Greg W
13-02-2002, 01:32:29
or a middle version, if you have the means to settle it, the king will grant you a junk...

I think this might be the route that I go down, assuming a "junk" is like a title to use the land. Basically as you have the means to use land (farm it, whatever), you can claim it as your own. I'll have to allow for a certain amount of extra land to come under your control as well, after all, you don't just control the land that your peasants work on, you'd have an area around that as well under your control.

One method to settle land was to grant better conditions to the farmers...

Might be a bit too complex, though I intend to model this somewhat. I basically want to enforce the "you can claim as much land as you can use" rule, and the land you can use is based on your number of peasants. Number of peasants will be based on various things - basically the more impressed with you the peasants are, the more "immigration" you get. Evil lords of course can go out and capture peasants to use as forced labour as mentioned above.

Then of course your used lands reaches borders with your opponents, and you need to look at other avenues...

To expand, you may want to pick a single-heir system...

Definately on that one. I do want this to be a multi-generation game, and I do not particularly want your heirs to have to split the land up. Keeping them around in various roles may not be such a bad idea though - after all, even the Lord may die from a hunting accident or similar. And if your line dies out, that's it, you lose the game. ;)

About gold... if possible make it an option...

Hmm, maybe in version 2. :p

Same thing with your own duties. Pay scutum (Schildgeld, what's that in english) or go yourself with your followers...

You talking about a vassal's obligations to his Lord to supply a certain number of soldiers for a certain number of days each year, right? Yes, I definately want to put that in, that was a big part of Pendragon, and a big reason to get dragged into battles.

People funded shitloads of towns as commercual, political and spiritual centers...

Hmm. I'll have to think about this one. I do like the ability to build things that will enlarge your commercial base (to an extent), but I also don't want to turn it into the point where you have xxx gold, you build a town and suddenly people appear and start using it. I want it to be sort of based on your other actions, like attracting peasants is. But on the other hand, if you're willing to start throwing money into development, why not let you? Could be a definate advantage too if you start getting so many people that you don't have enough land for them. :D

If you start with a relatively losely settled land, you could be promoted to count once you reach a certain economic clout...

Yes, I am sort of thinking about an unsettled area that a whole lot of Knights are sent off to settle, probably on the edge of the kingdom or the like. Maybe some land just won in a massive war with some other country. As you gain prestige you slowly rise up the ranks of Nobility. Lord, Baron, Count, Duke, or whatever the historical ranking system was. And as that happens, you gain auto-control over your previous neighbours, some of whom may be very happy with you, some of whom may be very unhappy with that.

To expand on the hunt and tourney idea, adventure could also be to join a crusade and make some bounty if you're lucky...

Yep, crusades, or very large wars is definately an option. And everything you do will effect various counters such as popularity, don't you worry. And those counters, or measures more precisely, will govern a lot of what happens to you. For instance the more liked you are, the less likely peasants will revolt, and they'll work harder. The opposite to that of course is the more feared you are the better the peasants will work, and the less likely to revolt (generally - you want to keep a tight rein on them tho).

Greg W
13-02-2002, 02:12:56
Internal measures of your progress

As mentioned a few times, I am going to be monitoring your various actions, and keeping little counters to measure how people will react to you. In Pendragon you had various "attributes" or "virtues" that marked to an extent how you played the game. These included things like honesty, honour and valour (there were about 10 of them from memory). And they all had a value assigned to them which would allow you or not to perform certain actions.

For instance, you may have an honour score of 17 (out of 20). Basically if you were ever called on to perform a certain action that involved your honour (like you swear an oath to never sleep with anyone other than your wife), you'd have to make a check against that (possibly with modifiers) to determine whether you could or could not perform an action.

As much as that might be fun in a PnP version, I think that people are going to get pissed off if they want to go off and kill a peasant, and I won't let them. However I do like the idea of keeping such tabs on the player's actions, and as he acts in certain ways, they will increase or decrease. And I'll probably base them out of 100 rather than 20.

I'll probably do something similar to a "give me a little history of yourself as a youngster" thing early on to give initial values (which will of course be only available to you in vague terms). After that, everything you do could effect one of those values. Honour for instance would go up if you rule on a peasant over a lord who beat him up for no reason (the lord would also probably be ticked off with you, but that's another matter). And when it comes time to determine how much your peasants like you, honour will be one of the factors that determine if they stay or leave.

As well as these virtues, there will be a system of measuring how much people like you. This will be based both on the compatability of your virtues, and generally on how you treat them. So, Sir Rupert from the next neighbourhood is an honourable lord, but not very valorous - he tends to run away a lot. You on the other hand are fairly honourable but very valorous. Seeing as your honour is fairly compatible, Sir Rupert will treat you fairly, and seeing as you are very valorous, he will look up to you to an extent, as he also wishes he was brave like you. On the other hand, Sir Francis from down the road is a thoroughly dishonourable man, and moderately valorous. He will dislike you due to the disparity in honour (he'll think of you as a good two shoes), and yet somewhat fear to take you on due to your high valour.

Note that other factors such as relative strength of men at arms will also be a factor, as well as past interraction. But that's a brief summary.

I don't want to have too many virtues, too damned hard to program all the interaction between people. But I will start with (as a rough guide - I may add more later):
Honour (basically how just and honest you are)
Valour (how brave in battle you are - note not how good in battle you are)
Compassion (how kind and generous you are)
Piety (how much devotion to religion you have)

I'm going to have to re-read Pendragon to determine if/when I put more than that in there, I dredged that up by going through my Ultima IV experiences. :D

My thoughts on raising/lowering them is that it will be fairly easy to lower a vurtue (people tedn to remember your acts of bastadry far more than your acts of kindness), but fairly difficult to raise them. So, killing a peasant who fails to get out of your way on the road might instantly lower your honour by say 10 points. Whereas rewarding a man who saved your life from bandits might only raise your compassion by say 2 points.

I also want to track your fame/infamy. Basically how well known you are. This won't be an x/100 score, more an open-ended number. The higher the number, the more anyone and everyone will recognise you, and be able to recall your deeds, and thus act towards you base don what they know about you.

Darkstar
13-02-2002, 19:52:48
If you don't want it to be a 'pay X gold, build a town', then you might want to look into:

* Road Building: Roads are the backbone of trade, and where 2 roads cross, you will get SOME form growth, so long as the roads are used.
* Canal Building: Canals were the original railroads... and still are. While expensive in labor, Canals can be very cheap to make in other costs materia.

So... You have a road going from one neighbor to another that passes through your land. If you build a road starting from there towards the nearest other travel area (say, cathedrawl, cattle market, etc), you could then 'fund' a landless lord (a cousin, brother, second son) to run a Tavern/Inn at the intersection. Travellers wanting to go from either of your neighbors to the NEWLY connected travel destination would take the road (especially if it's safer then cross country). And in doing so, stop off at that Inn/Tavern for a bit of gossip, and something to whet their whistle.

After a bit, you could then fund another business to help. Say, add a relay merchant... fund a corral, and cattle marketplace. Now, your neighbors might bring their cattle to you. You'd have to offer NEAR what they'd get in the further market, but not QUITE as much, for instance. As long as the travel time/convience makes up for the difference. Remember, most people stayed put... there won't be many that will travel. Too much work to be done... Humm... ok... let me re do this one...
REDO: Now, peasants who had been trading their spare stock off to their local merchant now will bring up their stock to YOUR market. It's just the 'next village over' (which is in their travel tolerance), and they get a better price then from their local merchant.

Yeah... that's better. :D

Anyways, with that better yeild, they'd be willing to drop a copper for a swig and to listen to the gossip. Then travel home.

Got it?

As for BAD ways to get ahead...

You go to the local WITCH (what else)? She can help you bump off your obviously inferior lord or neighbor. Or bump of his heir. (Poisoning, Sudden Crib Death, etc).

For higher lords then the local shrub lords, there's the more refined 'skilled and unscroupulous' courtiers and assassins. Poisonings were always the most popular way to bump off rivals, after all.

You'd NEVER have a Lord versus Peasant. Because the Lord would simply ask for the matter to be settled in Trial By Combat. And would probably have his champion or third do the combat, as no Peasant would be trained well enough in the martial arts that it would be honorable for a true ranked/landed man to fight him. Therefore, you Sergeant At Arms or other capable fighting retainer. In any case, its guaranteed one dead Peasant.

As I recall, serfs/peasants weren't free men and women. They were tied to the land. A serf or peasant ran off and got caught by a lord or his forces, he'd be returned to his rightful lord. This didn't change until the Black Death swept through. They were slaves in everything but legal title until then. The Black Death changed all that... freed up land, freed up positions, and in general shook up the very fabric of the society.

You might want to consider setting the START of your gain after a great Plague has walked through the land... In this way, you can explain why there is so much LAND available... so many people, from the serfs to the highest of nobles, were struck down. Any worse, and perhaps it was apocolypse. Of course, there are those now walking the land saying it WAS apocolypse. ;)

Greg W
14-02-2002, 02:20:13
Yeah, I was thinking of something along the lines of a Plague might be a good idea, or a really bad war where the population was badly hit. Or something. :D

I'm still undecided on the whole building thing, and I probably won't make my mind up until I try it out in code. It was just something mentioned about Civ III and how some people wanted a game where you didn't just build everything for your people, they did it themselves, and you had only nominal control over it. Then again, I do want some sort of user input into it. Might just have to be something I make my mind up on later, may even try a few approaches along the way. :clueless:

I was going to post something new today but my lunch hour has sort of run out. Plus I was only deciding on the framework for events last night, something probably not all that exciting. ;)

As a matter of interest though, probably the first thing that I will do is create the event engine. This will be a large part of the game, and will allow me to determine if people like the concept or not. Hmm, have to build the editor to manage them too, might start on that tonight...

Greg W
14-02-2002, 20:43:13
Well, started coding on the event editor last night (which will become the game editor in the end). Created the SQL Server database, added a few tables, played around with full text indexing (whatever that is :clueless: ). Then I started laying the editor out, starting with the Events. I have the form resizing itself nicely, always a good start. And I have a tree control in. Bloody unintuitive thing that is, and the help files are next to useless. :bash: More work tonight with any luck.

Darkstar
14-02-2002, 23:00:27
Help files? What, you were hoping some of the Old Dead Gods weren't actually dead, and had favored you with a help section that was worthwhile? Crazy!

Greg W
15-02-2002, 02:19:42
Actually, I know quite a few people that think that Microsoft's help files for VB are actually pretty good. In most instances, I find them pretty good too. Cept this one. Oh, and their connection to SQL Server sucked too. :mad:

Roland
15-02-2002, 08:18:13
DS:

"As I recall, serfs/peasants weren't free men and women. They were tied to the land. A serf or peasant ran off and got caught by a lord or his forces, he'd be returned to his rightful lord."

Huge variations in the legal and de facto situation. The only common denominator is that rule and land were tied into each other, the landlord had the low judicial power over the peasants. Unless they were free peasants like in the Alps or Friesland.

"The Black Death changed all that... freed up land, freed up positions, and in general shook up the very fabric of the society."

Varied. In some aspects quite the contrary. If landlords had enough power they tied there (now scarce) workers down more and demanded more to maintain their income.

Starting a town or market would require a priviledge, from your overlord... or from you if you're up the ladder far enough. May be interesting as you then can control would your sub-vassals do...

Same for other special rights, like mining.

Darkstar
15-02-2002, 23:36:19
Actually, I taught myself VB using their online help. yeah, that's good stuff. But I've found that their online help for much of their DB and Services to be absolutely horrid. Haven't looked in the lastest revs, maybe they've fluffed out and become better.

Roland
04-03-2002, 16:49:09
* bump *

Greg ?