i like the idea of changing the current fastsettling for 15c strategy but i personally dont think that turning all 15c into NPC villages is the right way to deal with it.
for the sake of this argument ill assume that these mentioned NPC villages will be similar to the current natar ones... as it is now rushing for natars is already a pretty viable tactic for the fact that you get a huge powerspike from the fully built up fields after you are done with chiefing... on top of this the creation of your second chief is way cheaper and faster because you dont have to build a second academy 20 and research chief a second time... so even now what you will often see is that players who went for an early natar will also go for a second one or will try to put a second chief into good use in an other way
Because of the above presented arguments the changes that you have proposed will lead to few experienced players, who are also willing to invest the necessary time and gold in the first weeks, occupying multiple 15croppers while players, who are maybe new to the game or maybe just had a bad start, will hardly be able to find a cropper.
a second factor is also that teutons are way better for early chiefing then the other tribes because of their cheaper chiefs and also because of their access to clubs... this would probably mean that a teuton could be able to be done with the chiefing of 2 NPC-villages while romans got one... this would make non-teutons nearly unable to occupy a good 15c (with 100%+ on oases) or force them into multiaccounting
I have said this one before that I am against player limits and other such things you would call "hard" limits. They ultimately don't work, end up making the game worse and if anything they limit the small and middle sized guys more than the big metas.
Story time: One of the big things that did draw me in to kingdoms from legends was the fact that there weren't any member limits. In games that do have hard limits on members as a member I'm always bit stressed by the fact that I could get replaced at any moment be it because i'm not good or active enough or because I hurt the kings feelings or maybe because he needs space to bring in a tactical merge member or his buddy. Meanwhile from the leader side I don't like the fact that I gotta pick the members based on merit. If I got a guy I spawned next to and helped build my kingdom (let's call him Bucky), and bucky always responds to my messages and defends where he can and sheeit but is never truly a top tier player. Then later on my kingdom fills up and now it's time to go for the win. I'm presented with the opportunity to take in a super defender from the kingdom that collapsed next to us, he did nothing wrong and wasn't the reason why his kingdom collapsed (let's say his king left) and he would clearly be a top 5 player in our team. Meanwhile our lowest performer is Bucky but hes always active in chats and been there from the start. Do I do the right thing for the lets say 58 other players in the kingdom and pick up the new good player and kick bucky or do I just stick with what I got and lower our chance of competing. That's the sort of thing I would hate to do.
Now while that is all emotional but still quite valid reasons why member limits are bad, there's also the thing that they simply don't work. Not only will the guys who really want to play together (be it because they are scared meta wuzzies that just want to 5:1 their enemies) or simply group of friends just bit too big for what ever the limit was set. They will just create wings and effectively play together even if it's penalized a bit. If anything splitting like this could make you stronger in current kingdoms since you could funnel all the treasures to just one kingdom hence putting the defense power and treasuries of 2 groups behind just one sets of doors making it much more difficult to attack. Also when the end game comes someones gonna get cut because the best buddy of the king who was set to lead the wing aint staying without a medal so off you go linemember#55 and thanks for your service. Also stuff like the beginner problem and then elite players all pooling into one kingdom are issues that are just made worse by a hard member limit.
Also the big bad meta players are more likely to abuse wings and such to bypass the limitations while the "honest" small guys are punished by not being able to match the big guys in numbers. That is not to even say how big a kingdom should be. 30(60) you suggested in OP is probably suitable for some but many would complain it's too small to house all their friends AND at the same time there would be mid size kingdoms and players who would rather have it be even smaller. Increase it to say 150 and it wouldn't even do much, drop it down to 20 and now all but the most elite members are getting a boot from the "serious" kingdoms. Hard balance to make even without considering premades and different sized servers like national and just quieter coms.
I too would want to see ideally 7 medium sized kingdoms in a slugfest for a win but instead of making limitations (these will only really hurt the guys playing by the rules) you want to switch up the core systems to favor the small guys over the big ones. You want your change to be something that doesn't outright prohibit adding a new helpful player to your team but one that discourages it (especially in the case of non contributing players) and gives rewards for doing thins in a small group
Let's take few examples.
A mechanic that favors the big and creates snowballing is how treasures are generated:
Governor creates treasures -> more governors is more treasures -> more treasures is more VP -> more VP is more attraction to new governors.
No matter how you look at it it's a vicious cycle that means if you are trying to win (which most players are) it's individually the best choice for them to apply to the strongest kingdom making it stronger and for the kings it makes sense to accept every applicant because that leads to more applicants.
A hypothetical (and actually quite bad suggestion) that would favor the small would be something like
Treasures are generated 10 per day at kings capital village -> each kingdom has the same potential to generate VP -> only those kingdoms that fight to steal treasures from neighbors get more VP generation
This obviously would be bad because small kingdoms would just get farmed for their VP (lets not even talk about multis) and people would still apply to the big kingdoms. On paper and in vacuum this a very neutral mechanic however compared to the current system.
Another approach to this could be that each kingdom generates 100 VP per day directly and you need to steal it but you can only steal up to double what the other guy has meaning you can't endlessly bully the small kingdoms for their VP. This would already solve few of the issues with the previous suggestion though generating couple new ones as well.
Another example could be a member tax (lets say at the wonder so the early game is relatively unchanged). There could be a button in the kingdom menu aimed for this and each member could contribute (let's call it decorations for the wonder). The more members you have the more it costs, let's say 50k per level of each + 5k for each governor of the kingdom. This way you could still add more members but each new member would make the decoration cost higher. It's not back breaking high so each new member would be profit so long as they contribute but at the same time it incentivizes the team to stay as small as possible. Legends had something like this in a special server I think, gave bonuses to troop production (or something like that can't remember) so a tax system like this can be literally anything and even hidden behind a buff or a bonus you have to pay for
Hopefully you see my point however. So long as massive cooperation and adding more members is the logically the easiest and most straight forward way to win then that means folks will keep on doing it.
Introducing mechanics that systematically favor smaller teams over biggest ones instead is a way for a truly more balanced game.
Scorox thats the post from Curtain in the original thread
its a long post but basically the argument he is making is that the reason for the development of big meta kingdoms is the snowball-effect of the treasure mechanic
for example: more members -> more treasures -> more vp -> more members again
so instead of seting a hard limit to kingdom members a smarter solution would be to nerf the effects that keeps big kingomds growing in size over the course of the game:
an other one of the mechanics that keeps meta kingdmos growing is that due to the faster treasure generation they get more treasuries -> more influence zone -> more members ... this way many of the big kingdoms can just cover complete kingdoms and recruit even more players throughout the game ...
one of the possible solutions could be to set a limit to the count of treasuries a kingdom can have... for example a if a kingdom could only get additional 4 treasuries (at 5k 15k 25k and 40k) -> that would lead to "smaller" kingdoms having faster access to new treasuries to be able to recruit players by covering their territory or merge with an other smaller kingdom and overall make the choice of joining a not top-tier kingdom more attractive
this would also be an obvious nerf to "bigger" kingdoms since they wouldnt be able to outgrow all kingdoms in size and cover an entire quadrant with their influnce zone at later stages... this would force leaders of large kingdoms to choose between recruiting new players in new areas and deactivate already populated treasury zones OR sticking to the area where they already have settled and established dominance but not beeing able to recruit smaller kingdoms by covering their zone
also an interesting take on this issue could be making it easier to beat bigger kingdoms:
what i mean by that is that a kingdom could recieve a small debuff on their defensive forces when defending against members of a kingdom that has a lower population by a certain percentage... that way there would be an obvious disadvantage in just mindlessly recruiting a large amount of players... this would also counteract to a big kingdom beeing able to recruit more defense just because of their large playerbase
these are just suggestions that came to my mind so there could be some flaws in them that i didnt think of
dont forget that you are getting a lot of ressources from quests
especially the returns of the very early ones are way higher than the investment costs... so if you progress towards completing quests the development of your first village will be really fast.
i would also recommend you to focus on building up your ressource fields because they give you a passive ressource income
There is this button in the top left corner of the forum (marked red on the picture)
if you press it a window like this will open up:
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Hope that helps… I also just noticed it today
treasury number 2 will be attacked
the scout is the only one telling the truth
the pathfinder and the equites legati are lying