nWoD City Territory System?



  • Would anyone be interested in working on a new system to handle the benefits and drawbacks of holding a territory/property/gridsquare in nWoD? I've had some ideas tumbling around and think it could be a fun project to tackle. Plus maybe someone will use it in a MUSH someday. We can't do worse than Damnation City.


  • Admin

    I think resource management should be part of that implementation.

    I.e. so your vampire owns the square. What does she/he get out of it?


  • Pitcrew

    Systems from werewolf territories could be a good little mechanical system to incorporate and take inspiration from... and a good system to graft onto city of damnation. It answers the Q of- what does a vampire/ww/whatever get for owning or controlling a given area? Bonuses to dice? Contacts? Etc Etc


  • Pitcrew

    I and others are working on something for the game we're opening. It won't come to a head entirely until Werewolf comes out, likely, but.



  • This is what I gave to @Coin as a rough draft to start from for his game (I'll help just about anyone get a game off the ground, even if I'm not staff there m'self). Feel free to poke holes or make suggestions, I'm sure he'll take what he wants from the mix. :)


    There's enough Stuff in town so that everybody can keep maintenance. E.g., there's vitae enough that all vampires in town can maintain waking up, maybe doing a jolt of Night Life, rinse repeat. Same with other resources for other supers and mortals and such. That way the people who do not give a fuck don't have to worry about resource-wars. Them that barplay aren't forced to deal with something they find unappealing and unfun. (This is a very important point. Not everyone enjoys this sort of game and forcing them to play it is Uncool.) Stuff above that maintenance level is what folks fight over.

    1. Categorize your Stuff. Examples:
      a. Population
      b. Wealth
      c. Commerce
      d. Business Interests
      e. Crime
      f. Free-floating Vitae
      g. Whatever Wolves use for power-juice
      h. Etc.
    2. Assign Stuff values for each neighborhood within a grid-square, per the flavor of that area IC. An UUC residential would be low population, high wealth, medium crime.
      a. Smaller neighborhoods have less Stuff.
    3. "Owning" a neighborhood means you and your posse have control over the Stuff there. How to own and how to steal ownership tbd.
    4. Stuff grants a single success on an appropriate roll (so long as the ST agrees that failure isn't lethal to PC or plot). Stuff successes are for no-rush guarantees.
      a. E.g. a vampire uses a point of wealth Stuff on buying something he couldn't normally buy.
      b. No good using Stuff for a success in a fight, there's too much lethality involved.
    5. Stuff regens on a set schedule. It cannot be pooled/saved.
    6. Ownership of neighborhoods is limited by size: a neighborhood with a lot of Stuff requires either a posse (this encourages group formation) or a Loner so very powerful that she can hold it on her own somehow.
    7. Stuff can be passed out by the Owner(s). Once given outside the posse, it can't be demanded back, though it can be returned willingly.
      a. Regeneration-rule still applies; no hoarding Stuff. It'll fade at the end of the time-period.
    8. Anyone above in rank or status can take Stuff (amount undetermined, possibly difference in rank/status?) from someone in the structure below. This encourages interaction with NPCs -- gain influence with your NPC to spare yourself the toll, thus keeping Stuff for yourself. Piss off your NPC boss, she takes almost all your Stuff for a week or two.

  • Pitcrew

    And there it is...

    If people want to specifically help with this, good areas to start would be:

    1. What categories should be present?
    2. System ideas for competing for territory.
    3. Size restrictins (though since we already have a pretty built grid, this isn't a main concern).
    4. Other.


  • One thing I would really like to see as 'core' to the idea of territory would be capping certain social merits like 'resources' and 'retainers' and 'allies' and 'contacts' and allowing specific territories to give you +1s or +2s to the cap. So having territories wouldn't -give- you free stuff; it would allow you to buy it.

    This could even apply to magical things. For example, you can't do top-tier magic without controlling a magical nexus territory that you can channel from.

    Another idea is the idea of 'Primary' and 'Secondary' Beneficiaries of territory. Only one person could get 'top tier' benefits from a territory, while their group could get secondary. You'd put your ritualist in charge of the magical nexus, your social butterfly in charge of another, your fighter in charge of one that gives a discount to fighting-stuff.

    Etcetera.



  • My suggestion would be to focus on Point 3 of EmmahSue's breakdown. That is, in other words: "what does this territory allow me to do?"

    In my opinion, the place to start is to look at a system independent from the PCs. Think about how the territories interact with one another: how do the Docks affect City Hall; how do the 'Burbs affect the Financial District; and so on. Next, figure out the scale of activity you want on the game regarding the territories: do you want it to be the focus of RP; do you want it to be a mini-game; etc. And then concoct your own system.

    Now that the territories have their own system, figure out how PCs dominate or vie for them. This may require an entire system of its own.

    I highly recommend not using Damnation City. Or Territories. Go with something that is tailored to how a MU works.


  • Admin

    @Ganymede said:

    My suggestion would be to focus on Point 3 of EmmahSue's breakdown. That is, in other words: "what does this territory allow me to do?"

    I feel without this there's no point in implementing a system for territories other than basic record-keeping (which can arguably be done better, and visually, on a wiki).

    It doesn't and likely shouldn't be draconic - your Vampire shouldn't starve even if they control very little for example unless they are just spending abnormal amounts of vitae. Maybe integrating it with other aspects of the system would make this work and fix other chronic issues we've had with different parts of games.

    For example (and with relaxed number crunching) although I usually despise automatic vitae expenditures to wake up, the system can also include something like this:

    • The vampire wakes up. -1 vitae, buster!

    • Unless they spend no vitae, they automatically get 2 vitae back the next evening from random hunting (to the maximum for their pool, of course). So if you only spend one vitae on extra activities for the night you're good to go.

    • Each area has a depletion counter. When it's high there are more victims, so you always want this to be as much as possible. It is restored by a % amount every day. A mall is deeper and is restored faster (people keep coming); a small suburban area is more shallow, there are just that many people there, and usually the same. Over-feeding will get risky.

    • If you want to hunt manually you do something like +hunt <territory #> <desired amount>. The chances to succeed are modified by how much you want and the area. Hunting near the police station or City Hall is stupid, and you need to take into account the depletion counter.

    Something like that.

    Admiral's idea of tying it to other stats has merit, too. The more places you integrate such things to the better it is likely to get.

    Ideally you should want to see real competition for these resources, and PC factions should be struggling to control the more lucrative ones. But there should be a relative shortage so that if say, you suddenly get a bunch of new Carthians but the Carthians only control this tiny little square, they're at a disadvantage - if they need to fight, heal up, etc they'll run out of vitae. Better start making some deals - or look for greener (redder?) pastures. :)

    After all, the goal here is to facilitate RP. When everyone's a fat content cow, territories mean very little.



  • Along with benefits, how could you make some actual consequences for territories? You work on your territory and make it nice, I call in the hipsters to start picketing your gentrification. That sort of thing.


  • Admin

    If done right, the consequences are built-in. You claim to control too much of a limited pool? Others want it. Others need it. So if you don't have the political/physical ability to defend it they'll figure out a way to take it from you.

    It's dangerous to overreach, and it ought ot be.


  • Pitcrew

    I'm taking note of all of this. Due to the complexity, it's unlikely it'll all be ready and coded by the time we open, but hopefully we can get something started that can easily leads to this eventually (and sooner rather than later).



  • You guys have given some interesting stuff to work on, RE: the system.

    From the sound of it Coin and Co. already have something going on so I won't sling more ideas up on here since most of mine are mechanical rather than thematic at this stage.

    I'm just going to write my stuff up and keep it in a nice little folder somewhere safe and snug until I get the chance to pitch it to someone.



  • @Arkandel

    It has been mentioned that resource-scrapping isn't what people want to do either. Your proposal would force vampires to claim and protect territory, or else not exist. You're not facilitating a variety of RP -- you're forcing it. And for some players, what you propose is a bar to RP.

    That's why I suggested an independent system. If people want to play political games, that's fine; if people want to eschew them, that's fine.


  • Admin

    @Ganymede said:

    @Arkandel

    It has been mentioned that resource-scrapping isn't what people want to do either. Your proposal would force vampires to claim and protect territory, or else not exist. You're not facilitating a variety of RP -- you're forcing it. And for some players, what you propose is a bar to RP.

    Can you explain how you think the proposed system does that, though? Given step 1+2 in it, you go to sleep (and spend 1 vitae) then wake up and automatically regain 2 vitae. So not only do you have enough to go by, you also have an extra freebie vitae for the rest of the day even if you control zero territory either solo or through your Covenant/Clan.

    If 2 is deemed too stringent it can be more of course. The objective is to let most people get by but not be prosperous unless they play politics.

    Obviously if that's not a goal at all it can be bypassed entirely - but I feel resource management only matter if resources aren't bottomless. And that when it does matter then PCs are encouraged (but not forced, not by design) to participate in some thematic RP.



  • @Arkandel

    A vampire that has no territory, but is repeatedly assailed and therefore blows through their vitae, is at a distinct disadvantage. So, they must either control more territory, or not get into confrontations for fear of being bled out over time. Thus, a bar.

    You can make a system of limited resources without making those resources integral to the existence of a PC. Those who want to play the politics game can fight over the resources, and those who don't can still exist.


  • Pitcrew

    Adapting territory and exploring the ideas for other spheres as well will likely give a better idea of how territory should interact with each other..

    I've said this to Coin privately, but I've been toying with the idea of adapting city of Damnation and writing out small little things to make it possible to use it in a more WW focused context.

    I mean, figuring out why a territory might be valuable, to who, and for what reasons are important after all. - Ignoring ideas of depletion or the like.. one thing is for certain- territories are familiarity.

    They are the guy down the street who you walk past every day at eight p.m., its the girl that you see volunteering for the salvation army in front of your local grocery store. Its knowing that the local HEB peddles drugs out the back. The bonuses should be whatever might be important- and whatever the vampire cares to cultivate.

    I could see territories being possible morality/integrity focuses for certain vampires- rituals or procedures that make him/her feel more human while at the same time providing dice and other benefits.

    Ganymede though does have the right idea though in regards to limiting access to vital resources, (Blood, Money, Survival)- its integral for the vampire setting to have the haves and the have nots- if everyone was a have, the Carthian movement wouldn't be as powerful as it is. There is differentiation between players, and so long as its reasonable for the players to advance in position, this differentiation should exist due to its core tenent of theme in VtR- creating conflict. Eh..

    where was I going with this again?


  • Admin

    @Ganymede said:

    @Arkandel

    A vampire that has no territory, but is repeatedly assailed and therefore blows through their vitae, is at a distinct disadvantage. So, they must either control more territory, or not get into confrontations for fear of being bled out over time. Thus, a bar.

    I suppose that's a matter of design, then. What you are describing is pretty much exactly what I'd like to see; regular Kindred not being inconvenienced at all (because they don't have outstanding costs) but if they happen to be drawn into a shitstorm to feel the need for better, deeper hunting grounds.

    I see where you're coming from though.



  • @Ganymede said:

    You can make a system of limited resources without making those resources integral to the existence of a PC. Those who want to play the politics game can fight over the resources, and those who don't can still exist.

    How? You keep saying you don't like Arkandel's system and that there's another way to do it, but-- as I think's been pointed out before in a similar discussion on WORA-- if the resources aren't somehow meaningful (collect this Stuff! It's shiny!) the players who "want" to fight over them really wouldn't have any motivation to do so.

    On the other hand, with meaningful resources, you're right-- there's no reason not to participate in the system, because players who do enjoy obvious advantages.

    It might be largely my opinion but I think people who dislike the idea of competing over territory as a coded system are going to dislike any implementation of that system, optional or not.


  • Pitcrew

    I feel kind of like the odd man out here, but I feel I have the courage to ask the question anyway: The idea that something is a bar to rp, or a hurdle, or unfair because not everyone wants to play that way, or wants to play politics, or hold territory. These things kind of confuse me to some extent because in my mind I think:

    . o O (If I'm playing a Vampire, don't I want to feel hunger, and want to feed to recoup the danger of being too hungry?)

    . o O (If I am playing a werewolf, don't I want to have territory, and possibly even a loci?)

    I'm confused on general principal. If the game has a territorial system, and that system is integrated with my template, such that I need to feed to maintain my suitability for other kinds of RP, I can see a holiday/vacation mode where you just opt out of running to 0 (zero) and becoming a monster, just because nobody can be online 24/7 and be sane, but the idea that there should be zero consequences ever to such a thing... Why am I playing a vampire?

    TR is a great example. You can just log in, and idle for 3 years, nobody'll say boo to you running out of blood. But if you are going around torturing activity out of the game, burning a lot of vitae points, and finding yourself in a situation where you are punished with difficulty getting more, or worse, to get more requires you to stake a claim and defend it, my answer would be:

    Don't go around the fucking game torturing it for activity that makes you spend too much vitae.

    The game is the game. Am I the only one who is thinking this way? I can't be the only one who is thinking the game is the game, and you sign-up for all parts of it when you accept the disclaimer logging into that game. I mean, do we really believe the game's rules should just not apply to us because they're inconvenient to our happy funtime?

    I feel like saying, if you don't want the responsibilities that go along with playing a certain thing, then don't ask to play it.. . .

    I mean this is true of nearly every game you can play. Cards run low in card games. Resources take thought. Chess has a finite number of pieces you can lose to achieve your objectives. If you don't like playing, why are you playing?


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