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Information and gossip, or "who brougth the wireless to Calradia?"

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Sheepify

Regular
1.4e brought the siege and battle icon notifications on the map. While a welcome addition, combined with the "news log" that just abstractly assumes we hear about everything happening no matter how far in the other corner of the map seems a bit... off. It also means there's that less incentive to seek out other parties, or NPCs, simply to get some fresh word about current events.

For starters, why not add some kind of "messenger post" upgrade option to castles and towns, and have the tier of its upgrade dictate how far away the player will receive the news? Aside from that, settlements and map roaming parties of any kind, as long as not outright hostile, should be the main source of any information.

Towns in particular deserve implementation of a "town crier," both as a strategic-map interaction option, and an in-scene character. To avoid wasting too much of player's time, implement this in such a way that it opens up a single pane listing all the notable events and potentially ongoing or future situations (such as tournaments announcements) in one place. For those who prefer less abstract interaction, add a dialogue option that cycles through various announcements.

Lords and caravans should be a major source of information, as well - the later likely retaining their current focus on trade information, but since both sieges and settlement occupations affect the economy, a good source of those.

Instead of having an abstract trading perk revealing pricing, why not make it affect just how accurate information the caravan trader actually provides regarding pricing? Preferably as an alternative to simply paying them for that information (which should, at that, come at lower accuracy than something charmed out of them).

Villager parties should, at worst, give some idea about goods offered nearby and their prizes, or information about potential problems (quests).

You could easily use this concept to implement a bunch of varied early-level quests solely revolving around delivering some form of information to a desired individual (with potential involvement of opposing parties wanting to prevent that at any cost).

Information is power. Access to information, I think, would be much better handled by adhering to historical reality, where it wasn't just something universally available, but potentially a valuable commodity on its own.
 

FBohler

Knight
WBNWWF&S
I don't like your ideas, I think the game is fine with a certain amount of abstraction.
Making information more difficult to get would add literally nothing to gameplay, making ir become more cumbersome, in favour of only realism.

In my opinion this is a no brainer, I don't need realistic boring gameplay, I need fun and rewarding gameplay.
 

Sheepify

Regular
Making information more difficult to get would add literally nothing to gameplay, making ir become more cumbersome, in favour of only realism.
It would make it a valuable trade good on its own, and add a lot of opportunities for further content expansion, but I can appreciate not everybody is interested in having to work with that as well.

Though, personally, I am rather bothered by the fact that my character instantly knows about a siege on the other side of the world.
 

FBohler

Knight
WBNWWF&S
Problem is that having partial or delayed information would only add to frustration and uninformed decisions.
The game would feel more random as things would seldom make sense.
 

Sheepify

Regular
Problem is that having partial or delayed information would only add to frustration and uninformed decisions.
Isn't that just an implementation balance issue, not something to do with the idea in itself? Why should you get perfectly accurate information from half the world away in periodic settings in the first place?

Wouldn't it open up means of expanding the game with additional mechanics precisely to address that? Like having a kingdom policy that, at a cost to town prosperity, establishes a system of messengers so at least the strategic information about state of war your faction is involved in reaches you faster? Or allowing the player to open up a trade office in towns, so that your caravans have an advantage over the competition in the speed with which they react to specific events in that part of the world?

Or even just encourage having more "traveller" small parties on the map simply so you can get some relatively fresh information about more distant places before going there yourself.

The game would feel more random as things would seldom make sense.
If implemented badly, perhaps. I disagree that it's something inherent to the idea in itself, though.
 

FBohler

Knight
WBNWWF&S
Imagine the scenario where your kingdom is making a huge cruzade and you're in the king's army. While you're away, the nearest faction declares war and take your fiefs. Then you approach you lands just to find they're not yours anymore and the game didn't give you the slightest of chances to take any action.

It's frustrating.

Now you restrain yourself from going too far away from your fiefs because of realism. I can't see how this could make the game any better.

Then comes the idea "why not give all info for the player to enable more freedom of choice and gameplay?".
 

Beau Vine

Recruit
M&BWBWF&SVC
I'm not sure how doable this would be in existing frameworks, but here's my take on some of your ideas:

1. Senior sees all his vassals see.
Villagers and caravans would be main source of information based on their vision. If villagers visit two cities, and you own/visit one of them - you should get rumours from the cities that get villager packets.If they go past a castle, you and your king would get knowledge of the garrison.

This means that on the start of the war you'd have much more info, and as it starts and heats up or slows down amount of info varies. And an isolated kingdom cannot beeline to empty castle unless they got an actual party or caravan scout that far
That also rejuvenates the escort caravan quest a bit. I've found myself manually escorting caravans through enemy lines, and it seems to build on current features.

2. Mechanics.
There's too many goddamned load screens to repetitive conversations already. To me the perfect implementation would be to have quests and conversations that can teach players this is an option - but that are entirely or mostly unnecessary to go with, have the info exchange be done in background as much as possible.
When I say "mostly unnecessary" - maybe a small Trade/Charm xp bonus for roleplayers, but otherwise the writing is so dry and repetitive I just don't see it as added value in this context.

3. Town crier.
This seems to be a good idea to hold. Not just as NPC, but as the main Agent/ Process. Instead of having dispersed network of connections, monitor these Town Crier nodes which are just lists that monitor who they had contact with and who they report to.
Town Crier keeps list of interactions from X days. At reset they cross-check their lists, this is a separate brainstorming session for Excel fans. Town Criers pass info up to owner clans, owner clans pass info up to kings.

PS.: X days could be dependant on mean average of Leadership and Roguery of city owner, thus making it more important for player who gets the border cities if they're not in the running.
 
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