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Northern Isles Rules (games 1-9)

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Northern Isles Game Rules

 

Basics

 

At the start of the game, everyone is assigned a secret role. Except for a few rare exceptions, no one knows the roles of the other players at the start. Everyone has an individual victory condition. Some facilitate collaboration with certain other players, whereas some are in direct conflict. The game lasts for at most five days. To win, you must be alive and have your victory condition satisfied at the time the game ends.

 

Role Assignment

 

Roles change from round to round. Please read the relevant role list for the current round. There are 16 roles. The first 10 are always in the game. The next 6 are chosen randomly under some specification. The details are:

 

Roles 1-10: Anama Priest, Bound Servant, Darkside Blademaster, Darkside Mage, Dionicio, Domont, Gladwell, Machrone, Micklebur, Shanker.

Role 11: Adventurer or Empire Spy (50% each)

Role 12: Alchemist (25%), Craftmaster Strine (25%), or Oliver (50%)

Roles 13-16: Randomly chosen to be any role not currently used.

 

Note that slots 13-16 may include possible roles from slots 11 and 12 that were not selected. For example, it is possible for both the Adventurer and Empire Spy to be in the same game.

 

Game Flow

 

I will send all players a PM revealing their role, victory condition, abilities and any other pertinent information. At any time, a player may submit by PM to the moderator if they want to use their ability or do an action. You may only submit one action at a time. I place these requests in a queue and process them when I can. They are processed in the order they were received, however, if your last action validated less than 24 hours ago, your action is skipped until sufficient time passes. Also, any actions that kill anyone are not validated for the first 24 hours.

 

Note that conditional submission of actions is only allowed for specific cases. These are actions that await the reception of an item or a player joining a faction where doing that action would be impossible otherwise prior to that event occurring. An example of a conditional action NOT allowed would be one where the action depends on whether the target is alive or not.

 

Some important terminology:

 

Submitted: The time stamp you give me your action. Do NOT edit your action to change it, but instead cross out the old action (strikethrough tag) and make a new post for the new action.

Validated: The time when your action becomes valid for processing, which is generally 24 hours after your last action was valid.

Processed: The time when I execute your action. After this, there is no rescinding actions.

 

Combat

 

In place of using your ability, you may instead decide to attack a character. When your action gets processed, the attempt will be made. When attacking, if the person is an enemy, you will get the first strike absent any other qualifiers. Otherwise, the person you attack will strike first.

 

A role is an enemy if:

 

1) That person is a target in your victory condition or if you are a target in theirs.

2) The target specifically requires an artifact in their victory condition that is specifically part of yours.

3) The target is in the same faction as another enemy or you are in a faction and another faction member has that enemy. In other words, all faction members share the same enemies.

 

Note that enemy lists can only expand. If you join a faction, everyone in that faction gains enemies that may be unique to you. If you die, those enemies remain.

 

The reason this rule is here is to help prevent random slaughter.

 

There are two primary considerations in deciding if a strike kills someone: skill level, and attack type versus immunities.

 

If the first strike fails due to skills or immunities, the other person will get a counter strike. In the rare case where both happen to be immune to each others attacks, neither one will be able to kill the other, the encounter will end, and the person being attacked will know who attacked them.

 

Every role has either a physical, magical, or poison attack type. A few roles are immune to either physical, magical, or poison attacks. If the attack type matches the immunity, that person may not be harmed by the other.

 

In the absence of immunities, there is the consideration of the skill level of the attackers. There are three skill levels: standard, stealth, and power. They have the following abilities:

 

Standard -- Can kill other standard or stealth roles, but not power. You can be killed by any other skill level. The target's death is immediately reported in the game thread.

Stealth -- Can kill any standard, stealth, or power roles. You can be killed by any other skill level. The target's death for an offensive kill is reported in the game thread only after 24 hours from the time of death has elapsed (or the end of the game). Defensive kills are reported immediately as normal.

Power -- Can kill any standard, stealth, or power roles. You are immune to being killed by standard skilled roles. The target's death is immediately reported in the game thread.

 

When a person is killed, the victor receives any items or artifacts. Roles, however, are not revealed upon death unless otherwise stated.

 

Artifacts, Items, and Coins

 

There are five artifacts and many items. Artifacts can be used indefinitely whereas items have one use. A few roles are trying to acquire the artifacts as part of their victory conditions.

 

A full list of artifacts is given in a separate post. All items and artifacts have a value in coins that are detailed there.

 

Coins are treated separately than items. Every person has an inventory that holds artifacts and items. Alongside the inventory is a number of coins. When someone is killed, the person that did the kill receives any items, but not coins.

 

Any kills done by traps count toward the person who laid the traps. If a person kills someone, they get any artifacts or items that person had.

 

Twice per day, you may trade items with other players or the moderator shop (see the relevant section) by PM to the moderator. These require both people submit the details of the trade to the moderator within 24 hours of each other. If they do not match, the trade is not done. Coins may be given away in exchange for nothing and the recipient does not need to accept.

 

You may only participate in two trades per day with the exception of merchants trading items or artifacts to/from their shop. This merchant trade only occurs if at least one item enters or leaves the merchant's shop. The merchants are Alchemist, Craftmaster Strine, and Oliver.

 

Giving away items or coins counts as a trade. Receiving only coins in exchange for nothing does not count as a trade. Giving away the coins, however, does.

 

To trade type:

 

Player A: TRADE {ITEMS 1} WITH {PLAYER B} FOR {ITEMS 2}

Player B: TRADE {ITEMS 2} WITH {PLAYER A} FOR {ITEMS 1}

 

or

 

Player A: OFFER {ITEMS} TO {PLAYER B}

Player B: ACCEPT {ITEMS} FROM {PLAYER A}

 

Note that you may trade any number of items for any other number of items. Read the section on merchants for more information.

 

Recruitment and Joining

 

There are two characters who can recruit others: the Anama Priest and Gladwell. Recruitment can only be done by mutual agreement (both must PM me within 24 hours of each other). Joining or recruiting does not count as an ability use and offers some advantages. Note that Darkside Loyalists may not join any other faction.

 

Only one person may join each faction per day except on day 5 where any number may join.

 

To join someone, you must type:

 

JOIN {NAME OF PERSON} as {ROLE}

 

This is the name (e.g. Stareye) and the role of the person you want to join (e.g. Anama Priest).

 

The following conditions apply:

 

Anama -- You can only join if you are a non-magic user, not a Darkside Loyalist, and are not or under a geas (i.e. from Gladwell). If you join, the following happens:

 

* You know who all other Anama members are.

* Your immunity becomes magic.

* You gain the ability to solicit a donation of a random amount of coins: 5-20.

* You gain access to the special Anama shop.

* You receive an extra victory condition: Anama Priest wins OR kill a mage or the Anama Hunter OR all mages dead.

* You become enemies with any magic users or servants of Gladwell.

 

Note: Your Anama membership continues even if the Anama Priest dies. If you are in the Anama and attack another Anama member, any benefits you gained will instantly be removed and everyone in your faction will be made aware of what you did. You are not able to actually leave the Anama, however.

 

Gladwell -- You can only join if you are not in the Anama or are not a Darkside Loyalist. You are under a geas with Gladwell. The following occurs:

 

* Gladwell learns your role.

* Your skill is power so long as Gladwell is alive.

* You will gain the victory condition: Directly satisfy at least one of Gladwell's victory conditions (kill a target or give him a required artifact) or break Gladwell's geas. If you were one of Gladwell's targets and join, you must satisfy another victory condition.

* If you have a victory condition that conflicts with one of Gladwell's, his supersedes yours.

* Gladwell can compel you to do any action in place of something else you would like to do. In an attack, you normally get the first strike.

* You become enemies with anyone who is enemies of Gladwell.

 

Notes: To break the geas, you must acquire and use the Holy Symbol after Gladwell is dead.

 

Moderator Shop

 

The moderator runs a shop open to all players. Any player may trade with the moderator for items in the shop. The cost of the items is marked up 50% from the base value. Items may be sold to the moderator shop for coins at 50% their base value. The moderator shop only accepts a trade of coins for items, or items for coins, and not items for items or a combination thereof.

 

Trading with the moderator counts as one of the daily trades. Trades are done on a first come, first serve basis. There are five slots for items that are refilled as items are purchased. Artifacts cannot be sold to the moderator shop.

 

Anama Shop

 

Any Anama members have access to a shop that is run by the moderator. It has a different set of items but otherwise functions much the same. The price of any item is the base value +5 coins. Items or artifacts cannot, however, be sold to the Anama shop. Normally, only Anama members will know the current contents of the Anama shop.

 

Merchants

 

Merchants may participate in an unlimited number of trades so long as an item enters or leaves the merchant's shop. Otherwise, this counts as a normal trade. The merchants are Alchemist, Craftmaster Strine, and Oliver.

 

Any items or artifacts you trade with a merchant will end up in his or her shop. A merchant can only trade an artifact or item if he or she receives at least 50% in value of the items in return. When a merchant is killed, all items disappear and any artifacts will end up in the moderator shop. Merchants may move any items in their inventory into their shop, but not vice versa. Items in the shop may not be used except when attacked or required for survival (e.g. use Antidote if poisoned).

 

Any potions the Alchemist makes will end up in her shop. Any items Craftmaster Strine makes will end up in his shop. Either one may trade with a promise to make an item (50% value rule applies). This allows for a person giving coins, items, or artifacts in exchange for the service. This is done by specifying (in the PM to the moderator) that the merchant wishes to use his or her action to produce the item to be traded.

 

Oliver begins with a shop that contains four random items and an artifact.

 

Private Communication

 

Private communication is an important and vital part of the game. People are encouraged to make use of the public thread as well as private communications. You may use any means at your disposal.

 

Dead players may not communicate with anyone else about the game. If discovered by the game administrator, that player may be permanently banned from all future play.

 

I do ask that you be able to give me an honest summary if I ask for it. This helps me understand the game flow better and helps address weaknesses in the game.

 

Statuses

 

The following statuses are acquired by way of abilities and items:

 

Antimagic: Any magic attack, anything that inflicts any status effect except poison, or ability use by a magic user will fail. This applies for both the person with the status and anyone that person targets.

Berserk: Gained from skribbane use. You have a skill of power and get the first strike.

Blessed: You effectively have power skill.

Confused: Any action you do will fail.

Cursed: If you attack someone, your attacks will be unable to harm your opponent.

Poisoned: You will die in 24 hours unless this effect is cured by either using an Antidote or the Anama Priest.

Protected: If you are attacked, the attack will fail. Note you are not protected from item or ability use.

Resistant: Your immunity is magic.

Shielded: Your immunity is physical.

Vulnerable: You will have an immunity of none. Note that shielded and resistant override this status.

Withdrawal: After Skribbane use wares off, you gain this status permanently (except Skribbane Addict). Any action has a 50% failure rate.

 

All statuses (except Withdrawal) last 24 hours from when the action is processed. The statuses Berserk, Blessed, Resistant, and Shielded only apply for one offensive attack. This allows only one offensive action with any of these statuses. Without this rule, it is theoretically possible to get more than one.

 

Miscellaneous

 

For clarity, character or player describes the name of the person playing whereas a role is what personna they are playing. For instance suppose I (Stareye) am playing the Cranky Moderator and you wanted to target me. If the action is for a character type: TARGET STAREYE. If instead it is for my role, type: TARGET CRANKY MODERATOR.

 

Targeting a dead person for actions that require someone to be alive are simply removed from the queue. Such actions are not processed and a new action must be submitted.

 

In the case of roles that need to kill specific targets, killing a target only counts once. If you kill your target and he or she is resurrected, killing him or her again does not count towards your victory condition. Note that victory conditions that say a role must be dead, must die again if resurrected.

 

If a player is killed in a stealth attack, the player will be informed that it was stealth and asked to try and not make their death obvious while still not influencing the game. The latter takes precedence. When in doubt, just say absolutely nothing about the game after you are dead.

 

In the case when a role that needs a particular artifact joins Gladwell, it is acceptable for Gladwell rather than the role to hold the artifact at the end of the game.

 

Certain abilities give a guaranteed first strike. The order of precedence are: always, normally, unspecified, and never. When both people have a first strike condition that matches, normal battle order applies (consult the section on enemies).

 

Please post any questions about the rules below.

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Oh, late last game I realized something else about the GIVE -> OFFER change. It makes it more difficult to ally with the Skribbane Addict, because the Skribbane Addict can now be a cad and reply to an offer of Skribbane by killing the person with the Skribbane, with no possibility of being wrong.

 

Previously, you could just obfuscate who held it and when giving time came around, that person no longer had it.

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On the other hand, if giving Skribbane is allowed, then one can team up with the Skribbane Addict and plant Skribbane on someone, giving the Skribbane Addict first strike against them, turning it into a game of Hot Potato. (I failed to apply this strategy last game, but I think it could work in principle.)

 

I don't see how to resolve both of these problems simultaneously.

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I think some people were playing Hot Potato with the Crystal Spire last game, so yeah.

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Originally Posted By: wz. As
On the other hand, if giving Skribbane is allowed, then one can team up with the Skribbane Addict and plant Skribbane on someone, giving the Skribbane Addict first strike against them, turning it into a game of Hot Potato. (I failed to apply this strategy last game, but I think it could work in principle.)

I don't see how to resolve both of these problems simultaneously.


They have to accept the trade, and if someone is stupid enough to accept Skribbane blindly without reason or contact, they deserve their fate.

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Making an alliance with anyone is always a risky business. The best defence is make sure he has no reason to want you dead.

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Originally Posted By: Xelgion
They have to accept the trade, and if someone is stupid enough to accept Skribbane blindly without reason or contact, they deserve their fate.


Read the start of the paragraph: if giving Skribbane is allowed. He's comparing the relative merits of the "give" and "offer" systems.

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I believe that's what the Warding Crystal and Shanker do. The Box of Traps is something else.

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Yes, the box of traps provides something else altogether. I did not list it as a status because it is so different than everything else. Granted, when I do accounting, I track it as such.

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All right, this is the draft for the final form of the rules for game 6. I'm sure I've missed something. Please look them over and offer comments. Thanks!

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Skribbane withdrawl seems too harsh. The effect of taking skribbane seems similar to maybe one-time use of meth or PCP, but the withdrawl is similar to 50 years of heavy alcoholism. Why not limit the withdrawl to 1-2 rounds, and add on additional rounds exponentially for successive use?

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Keep in mind, Skribbane is very powerful. First strike is hard to get, and Skribbane gives it to you even when defending. Power skill not only enables you to attack anyone, but also makes you immune to the attacks of many other roles. It's appropriate that it should carry an equally heavy penalty.

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Originally Posted By: *i


There are five slots for items that are changed and refilled randomly once per day. Any artifacts in the shop remain there until purchased by someone.


I noticed that the moderator shop hasnt changed since day one and I wanted to know if this rule is out of date or not.

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If one of Gladwell's target roles joins him, does the act of joining count as "satisfy[ing] one of Gladwell's victory conditions," or does the joiner need to satisfy another?

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I'm going to say the person joining must satisfy another. There must be a disadvantage for joining Gladwell.

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I updated stealth skill. Comments please?

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Originally Posted By: *i
I updated stealth skill. Comments please?


It's an interesting idea, but how will it interact with other actions? If Shanker tries to protect the target, or Gladwell tries to compel them, or something like that, will they be told that the target is dead?

Also, will the target be informed of his/her own death as soon as it happens? If they are, it seems like their sudden disappearance off AIM and refusal to respond to PMs for 24 hours would raise suspicions.

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I'm guessing so. It's just not announced publicly. And, perhaps, a suspicion isn't sent out till after the death is reported.

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To clarify, this means announced publicly on the main thread.

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Thuryl brings up valid points. My resolution is that trying to contact the dead player or using actions will give clues as to what happened to the player. If anyone figures it out before public revealing, that is fine. The key is to delay people from knowing about a player's death, not prevent it altogether.

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Also, I would request that dead players under a stealth kill (they will be informed) to try to not give away their death. This is not a hard rule, but a good faith one.

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Originally Posted By: Thuryl
It's an interesting idea, but how will it interact with other actions? If Shanker tries to protect the target, or Gladwell tries to compel them, or something like that, will they be told that the target is dead?

I guess Shanker/Gladwell/whoever could get a generic "your action failed" message without being told the reason for it. Alternatively, they could just not be told anything until the death becomes public, but I like that solution less.

EDIT: *i beat me to part 2 of this.

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Also, to clarify *i's post about stealth-victims not giving away that they are dead: the rule about not influencing the game takes precedence. Players are asked to evade questions, feign inactivity, or the like, NOT to go on behaving as if they were alive.

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An interesting solution to this dilemma is to simply process the actions normally from the person creating the action's side and doing nothing on the dead person's side. Certain actions like attacking will simply have to fail, but that is okay. This really ups the power of the stealth skill.

 

I also may make it so Gladwell will learn of any servant dying immediately. He has an obvious mental connection.

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So here is what I am thinking. Let me know what people think.

 

You may use any ability on someone that is living according to the game roster in the public thread. If the person is really dead, you will get something to the effect of "Your action failed". If any action fails for any reason, you just receive that message with no explanation. This includes attacking people who are warded.

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I also threw in a new status: antimagic. This causes some actions to fail. Shanker can also cast it as one of her effects. The new item, Null Bug, also inflicts this status.

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Originally Posted By: *i
I also threw in a new status: antimagic. This causes some actions to fail. Shanker can also cast it as one of her effects. The new item, Null Bug, also inflicts this status.


Between this and the Anama, mages are very weak in combat now. It also makes it significantly easier to kill Vahkohs, who has a hard enough time already.

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Originally Posted By: *i
You may use any ability on someone that is living according to the game roster in the public thread. If the person is really dead, you will get something to the effect of "Your action failed". If any action fails for any reason, you just receive that message with no explanation. This includes attacking people who are warded.
So if you attack someone that is dead you've wasted your action for the day?

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Yes. Think of going out to find someone, spending all day, but failing.

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Thuryl makes a valid point. I changed the Assassin Leather to the Ring of Magery. I also added the Focusing Orb and the Smoky Crystal which should make mages stronger.

 

I may revise it so that Vahkos' physical attack supplants antimagic.

 

Also added the mystic symbol which is a cheaper warding crystal for mages only.

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I realize this comes from completely out in left field, but - is there some way to work in a spectator-friendly aspect of this game ? Even from this distant vantage it's fascinating. Allowing some insight into the in-play actions would expand that greatly. I'm not sure myself how this might be accomplished without interfering with the game itself. Ah, well - it's just a wish; this isn't one of the game's original goals, I know. I have been following the games' developments since the beginning - at least, that which is visible on these forums.

 

Re another issue recently brought up, considering the automation of (parts of) this game is an interesting prospect. However, it seems that the best solution for time invested would be to implement one or another mud engine, with the particulars adjusted to match the game's details. I'm not sure a 100% replication would be possible, but it seems a good fit.

 

This would best be addressed in a different thread. The earlier discussion seems to have been dropped.

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Unfortunately, it is hard to come up with a system that allows spectators (and not players) to see what's going on. You could befriend or contact the players and ask them what they are up to, but I doubt many will share it as they'd need to make sure you won't share the information.

 

For the moment, all we can do is ask the players to give lots of details of what they did during the game and the reasons for it after the game is over smile

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Originally Posted By: Sarachim
The best way to watch what happens in a game is to play it. smile

And even then you can miss stuff.

Dikiyoba.

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