Prevent Hostile Takeover (Amended). Important To ALL Players, Essential To Non-Payers.
Essentially my previous ideas to prevent hostile takeover were slightly flawed but also relatively difficult to accomplish. So myself and some other players have discussed and come out with a new idea for the same issue.
Essentially my issue is this. As it stands now any blocks left out in the wilderness are at risk as a player who sets a town stone or expands over them may immediately take them. To me this is not acceptable.
With the majority of the game still open to settle there is utterly no excuse why someone should need to annex another players progress.
It should be inherent that if you place blocks they are in fact your blocks and should not be up for grabs simply because another player bought a $5 town stone. This is a slap in the face to loyal players who may not be able to purchase town stones or the unreasonable expansion price needed to ensure the safety of their structures
Not only do some players blatantly not have money to purchase town stones it also remains that certain structures are beyond the reach of being ultimately protected by a town stone. Roads specifically are in danger of being taken over and rerouted despite them being placed for an exact reason by an exact player. Furthermore with the last town expansion costing effectively $500 there is a soft limit to how much a player can really protect meaning there really is only so much progress a player can make.
As it stands now most players and their structures are at risk and some players have already lost pieces of their progress because of hostile takeover.
Here come the suggestions:
1) existing blocks are owned by the player who placed them regardless of a new town stone or expansion of existing town stone
2) players must ACCEPT citizenship
3) platinum items should not be able to be removed by anyone but the owner
By this suggestion players progress cannot be erased simply because somebody wanted to claim their blocks as their own with a $5 town stone. Players are able to expand beyond town limits and players who cannot pay for a town stone still have their structures saved
Some may argue this would defeat the purpose of the town stone. However, town stones would still allow mayors to sanction who may build WITHIN the town giving them ultimate control over the territory their town inhabits currently.
However, as pointed out this leaves on flaw. How to deal with blocks placed in the way of expansion or directly outside of towns specifically to troll or get in the way. Or, newer structures which impede the expansion or risk being swallowed by a town leaving essentially an island of area the mayor has no control over.
1) If a player should build in the approximate expandable area of the town they must understand that the pre-existing town has priority over the territory should they expand and the player may be requested to remove their structures. Also, should a town consume their structure (if the town pre-dates the structure they've built) the player would understand that they cannot build once the town overpasses them only remove their own blocks.
2) there needs to be a petition process to get blocks removed that are either hindering active expansion or that have been left unattended or unused for a reasonable amount of time. This would include blocks placed to troll or irritate other players. If the block removal request is accepted than the blocks are returned to the initial owner. This would also help aid in cleaning up abandoned structures that no longer active players may have left around.
3) Finally, structures within town limits are PERMANENTLY safeguarded, this would be the other benefit to a town stone. No matter how long a player is inactive the town may not be altered without express permission.
By this suggestion players who build around towns which predate their structure ultimately do not have priority since they have built within the hypothetical expansion area of a town. Also, blocks which are impeding active players as well as active progression may be removed if they are not currently being used.
I will use a personal example of my town. As it stands I built my town far away from any existing structures and built my own road off an existing road. Should someone decide to come after and place a town stone on this road they are given immediate ownership of my blocks as well as the ability to reroute the road away from my town. This would essentially A) leave my town permanently cut off or B) force me to reroute a pre-existing road that was build specifically for my own town. Furthermore as it stands it is a danger to even put a teleporter in my town as it allows players to take over area that they otherwise would have barely had access to had I not placed my teleporter.
What I would like to see is that if a player were to build a town along my road my road would remain intact and I would have the opportunity to tell that mayor that the road will remain there as it is my only access point to my town (other than the teleporter i've temporarily removed). This newer mayor would have to accept that there is a pre-existing structure and either build around it or decide to place their stone elsewhere.
Finally the last issue becomes the border expansion issue.
As it stands if a town stone is built too close to another it essentially blocks expansion in that direction. However, this means if too many staggered towns are placed close to another it will ultimately result in either an inability to expand or the only expansion ability to be in a scewed or absolutely unorganized direction. This also means that the town stone would essentially migrate indirectly to one side of the town greatly inconveniencing residents who may live on the opposite end of town.
1) a town stone simply cannot be placed within the probable expansion area of another. this would also ensure that there will always be wilderness and area to farm cats as not every town may be fully expanded
2) if a town stone is attempted to be set within the expandable area of another town the pre-existing mayor must give permission to the newer mayor to place the town stone in that area
As a last word I would request that all players also be required to have an email account on file for account creation. This would mean that players are held (more) responsible for misbehavior. This would also mean that players who's blocks are at risk of being petitioned to move will get an email notifying them of the essential complaint against their blocks. They would have a chance to offer a rebuttal to the petition since their blocks are pre-existing.
I feel this entire suggestion is the only fair way to balance the game. Players who pay are given benefits for doing so but also means they may not simply run over non-paying players who have made progress in the game. It is a middle solution granting power to mayors but also ensuring the progress of players who have not or are unable to the exponential fee of town-ownership. This suggestion also ensures a good infrastructure for the game as roads may not be altered but only expanded on so every town has the opportunity to be connected.
Essentially as it stands veteran players are being punished for making progress first and incoming players are given the ultimate opportunity to wipe away that progress.
While the petition suggestion will require time to go through the petitions it is quite frankly the only way to be fair to ALL players.
Thank you all for considering this suggestion.
The new inventory-return system prevents players from block stealing by returning the items to your inventory.
I wouldn't call this "completed" as the hostile take-over is still imminent, returning the blocks doesn't stop you from being hostile forced out of an area.
I've made a (very) rough image of the area a player can place a town stone without displacing another player.
With all that open area is there really any reason to compromise anyones progress?
Very simply put, this allows new players to build wherever they want provided that it does not compromise an existing player. Which is exactly how it should be. As it stands now veteran players who have not paid an astronomical amount are at the mercy of incoming players.
Also with the expanded town borders if someone places a town stone too close to yours it permanently disfigures your future expansions. This also means it may result in players not getting the full value of their expansion.