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Courtly atmosphere in the OB

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  • Courtly atmosphere in the OB

    Perhaps it's cheap of me to start this discussion only 3 days before I leave to go to GenCon (woo hoo). I'm expecting it might cause some arguments. And though I am currently playing, my character spends almost no time actually in the Outer Bailey. But I would expect the ideas here for the OB could easily be expanded ten fold for the Inner. Plus I wouldn't discount me eventually making or bringing out an alt to cause my particular brand of trouble over there.


    It has always been an issue, people not acting courtly enough. The care bear mentality. Let's all be friends. Or however you might personally see the problem of how people act in the Outer Bailey.

    Personally, I don't see a problem with a group of first yearers sitting on tables in the dinning hall getting drunk and being rowdy. That actually can add to the atmosphere. Ra' didn't care a whit about getting into the IB until after the whole Queen is a whore incident. After that, he realized that the OB with it's rushing around, noise and general behavior wasn't for him. The OB was more real than he wanted. So it motivated him in another direction.

    But those same people should perhaps sit a little straighter when the Lord Marshal walks into the room. Heck, when a sergeant of the royal guard walks in, people should watch themselves a little more.

    The same is true, and perhaps more so, with intrinsic rank. Step careful around the honored guests. Defer to a courtier. And be on your best behavior around a knight or noble.

    But what is the stick and what is the carrot to doing this? Or perhaps a better question is what do you ideally see as the stick and carrot. I know that playing a courtier, I would be more than open to hear ideas of what you would like as punishments or rewards.

    True, I've got many of the stock sorcerer sticks. If you've seen anyone after the binding you are familiar with my ugly stick. And I'm pretty sure somewhere I still have a plot stick, but you REALLY don't want to see that one. But I am one of perhaps two that can snap my fingers and mute someone asking me bothersome questions. Or teleport them to their room like the bad little boy they are.

    So what would you expect in the arsenal of the court to show disfavor? Please feel free to think outside the box. It doesn't matter if it isn't possible. We can work to try and make it become possible.

  • #2
    I would like to see Ra turn someone into a frog or rat that is smarting off to him. That would be hilarious! Only for like 24 hours or less. . Or make them into like this Quasimodo thing for 24 hours. Something like that, that might really cause them embarrassment or at least make them think twice about showing disrespect to Ra or any Courtier again. That would be great!
    Finna Moon, Courtier to Her Majesty's Court




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    • #3
      Turn someone into Foon.
      ~Malatrios

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Ra'Dorcha View Post
        So what would you expect in the arsenal of the court to show disfavor? Please feel free to think outside the box. It doesn't matter if it isn't possible. We can work to try and make it become possible.
        I'd like to pose perhaps a more intriguing question. Instead of asking what sorts of evil might befall a commoner for not properly bowing and scraping to certain people. I would like to ask what sorts of consequences should those of intrinsic rank suffer if caught routinely acting below their station. Better question than even that, what should happen to those of intrinsic rank caught using commoners as the pawns they are? Or any of the other intrudes of the IB. Should these consequences be more publicized? Everyone knows why Gareth went from living in the IB goths OB. (Or did at the time.)

        Indeed, there are greater gaps along the chain from 8 to 1 than there are elsewhere. A lowly coutier caught rallying support to slander the prince should suffer far worse than a commoner lipping off to the Sargeant.
        Tyr Gunn
        Lieutenant of the Queen's Regular Army

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        • #5
          I was going to post in the other thread that was headed in this direction, but opted not to as I didn't want to go too far off tangent. However this thread seems more suitable for what I was going to touch on. I wish I had the time and patience to go into a long essay on the whole IB/OB seperation thing, but I enjoy writing long winded posts about as little as I enjoy reading them.

          To put it shortly; yes, the aristocracy are discouraged from loitering in the Outer Bailey. That it's even been brought into question indicates a severe failure for the older players to pass on the themes of the game to the newer players over the course of many years. This in turn has caused, eventually, new older players who weren't shown correctly, and do not now know how to show correctly to the new players of today.

          The seperation of the rich from the poor (or the Court from the Commoners in CM's case) is part of what the Winter Court is about. Winter is about appearances and composure, one's public life and one's personal life are best kept at a distance. Virtues such as Courtesy are very highly valued, whereas virtues like Honesty are an acceptable casualty in the face of keeping up one's appearances. Without revealing too much IC information, I can say I've had the Queen Herself tell my PC that Honesty and Chivalry were secondary to politics and appearances (a significant factor in causing my PC to go the route he did, but I digress).

          In such an atmosphere, it should come as no surprise whatsoever that members of the court mingling with commoners is frowned upon. And at a certain point in the game many years ago, doing such was often met with political consequences. This theme, however, was largely enforced by the playerbase as a whole. The members of the court would 'police themselves' so to speak, whereas in Marrach today so many are focused on 'not pissing anyone off' that they neglect their own responsibility to shun those who break these vital laws of Winter. Today there are few active authority figures to report these transgressions to with any expectation of a result, though even those that are active I suspect are rarely if ever taken advantage of to this end.

          One thing I concur with was the statement that the game has changed. It has, undoubtably. I still smile inwardly at the times when Gareth was known somewhat notoriously as the person who mentioned 'Summer' to the Queen and was banished from the Inner Bailey for it. Today we have handfuls of people about the castle who have openly taken up arms against the Winter Court and what it represents - and not to pick on anyone (I love you Marc :P ), but one of those rebels is now a Yeoman tasked with protecting the Inner Bailey, where Gareth is still banished. I mean not to bring this example to light to question or gripe about it, merely to demonstrate how the game has changed (and in my own opinion, lessened) in regards to consequences for one's actions in the Winter Court.

          Because this post seems one-sided, I'll point out that the game was originally designed to hold a much larger playerbase. There was a time in the game's design when it was expected that we could fill the Inner, Outer, and Under Bailies simultaneously with enough players that roleplay with several people could be found any time of the day anywhere in the Castle. We've seen on numerous occasions, extended downtime maintenance as the game entirely was moved over to a seperate, smaller server as Skotos began to acknowledge that 100 players online regularly wasn't going to happen (mind you, I saw 100 players on once, several years ago during a particular plot).

          Point being, CM never reached the level Skotos initially expected it to, and finding someone to roleplay with can sometimes be difficult when you don't have access to the Outer Bailey. This in mind, who can really fault the player of a high ranked character who wants to wander to the Outer Bailey to roleplay? We need to balance the need to keep the game's theme ongoing with the need to give players a way to roleplay with others and have fun. While a lot of it *can* be addressed ICly, ultimately both these things are OOC problems.
          "It is more honorable to be raised to a throne than to be born to one. Fortune bestows the one, merit obtains the other."
          - Petrarch


          "So far as he is able, a prince should stick to the path of good but, if the necessity arises, he should know how to follow evil."
          - Niccolo Machiavelli

          "Men should be either treated generously or destroyed, because they take revenge for slight injuries - but for severe ones they cannot."
          - Niccolo Machiavelli

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          • #6
            Lucus' palyer summed it up well. As one of those Courtier characters, I've found considerable resistance when my character tries to put people in their place (commoners talking off to aristocracy, for example). The carebear mentality has gotten far too prevalent, and has harmed the game in my opinion.

            Also, I have found that a balance of IB and OB is best as an IB char. I don't have to spend hours without RP in the Inner because nobody is around (I don't pay a monthly fee to stand alone in the IB courtyard), and I can try to have my char teach people as best he can while in the OB.

            I don't feel there is anything wrong with IB chars in the OB, as long as they are upholding the virtues and beliefs of the court while doing so. After all, it is from those chars that the lowly commoners are supposed to learn from, but if they never see their teachers, how do they learn?

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Tyr Gunn View Post
              I'd like to pose perhaps a more intriguing question. Instead of asking what sorts of evil might befall a commoner for not properly bowing and scraping to certain people.
              Why do people always go here? When have I or Ra' ever suggested people must cowtow to him? Don't call him Initiate and he might be displeased and express that but he wouldn't go all nuclear over it. But if someone strikes him he should just take it like he was a common guest?




              Better question than even that, what should happen to those of intrinsic rank caught using commoners as the pawns they are? Or any of the other intrudes of the IB.
              Really? Wasn't it just discussed that the OB wanted to be more involved?

              Lead, follow or get out of the way.

              If you don't want to be a pawn then do one of the other two. Courtiers are exactly the ones that should be caught using commoners as pawns. A noble or heaven forbit the Prince or Consort shouldn't be getting their hands directly dirty. They should use the courtiers as tools to move and motivate their pawns.


              A lowly coutier caught rallying support to slander the prince should suffer far worse than a commoner lipping off to the Sargeant.
              Working against the Prince, sure. If I worked against the Prince I'd expect him to have a much nastier bag of tricks available to him. But if we don't have anything we can do in response then you get people like Twulf slapping Elea. For those not familar with them, replace Twulf with whoever is the current thugish type character in the OB and Elea with Uwaine.

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              • #8
                I wasn't making arguments for or against any of these questions. I just don't see why the discussion should be limited to how we might punish commoners for their various flaws and inadequacies, and so I posed leading questions to ram converse in that direction. Was I hijacking here?
                Tyr Gunn
                Lieutenant of the Queen's Regular Army

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Tyr Gunn View Post
                  I would like to ask what sorts of consequences should those of intrinsic rank suffer if caught routinely acting below their station.
                  In an ideal world, demotion and other negative consequences. Players and staff members alike need to stop being carebears.

                  And yes, I say that while playing a ranked character who does not always act her rank.
                  Proud member of: WWMHSBA

                  "Why don't you all just go submit some plots where you can get pregnant, give birth to you own alt as an annoying child character, have it grow up to be a drama queen, and then you can use IC/OOC crossover to hide the goods you stole and escape from the dungeon that you're locked in due to a badly run rape plot?!" - Age

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                  • #10
                    First: Lucus' P, great post.

                    This is, I admit, subjective, but I am constantly surprised at how badmouthing the Winter Court tolerates. In fact, I think that the Winter Court has gone so far as to actively encourage it through gross incompetence.

                    This is not just the PCs. Seemingly Big B tolerates open attacks on the nobility as an institution as well. My character, who supports idealistic notions chivalry etc. doesn't know what to think. How can any ruler tolerate this? Why does the court accept being urinated up and down the back? And why should he respect a court that lets that happen? This process has gotten worse and worse. With Temor I recall courtiers initializing public conversations about the summer knight and open speculation upon his identity with inquisitors present. Why does Big B not quash those people? Why doesn't the queen?

                    There is a carebear mentality, but on the other hand, it is a very understandable one. It takes a huge effort, to say the least, to remove someone from their office. It takes years of work, usually, to get a character to courtier and if someone enjoys playing that, I am honestly not that eager to get them removed from it. Secondly, if I destroy a productive character for good, I may remove something from the game and I am not eager to do that either. I think that a, say, Sinvyless castle is a poorer castle.

                    My personal sentiment has always been the same: Make demotions and promotions easier to obtain. Let us say that a courtier is slacking on a sixth link job? Fire them and demote them and let people know that the castle is seeking someone to do it. However, this demotion need not be the end of their presence in the IB. If it is easier to crawl back up, maybe people are more willing to run risks?

                    In general, there should be a much stronger effort to police the high-rankers. It is perfectly alright to have commoner friends, but if they do not bow and scrape in public, you're in troube. If Sir Abylas slums it in the outer, just hanging around at the bar, remove him. Don't make it a huge effort to remove Sir Abylas for this, if he keeps at his behavior - because people don't want to spend that time and so Sir Abylas will continue and lower standards for a long time.

                    I think that ICO did that part right with the favour system - which by NO means implies that we should bring it here - there is a policing of high-rankers who behave too chummy with the rabble and the effects could be seen after a few weeks. If we had something equivalent here, people wouldn't dare snarl at the court in public or slum meaninglessly in the OB, I tell ya.
                    Any ruler who keeps a chained midget at his feet is alright in my books. Let's be honest: it's a sign of a stable and well-run society.

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                    • #11
                      Another thing which is true for me personally, but which I don't know how many agree with:

                      I think that the way that the way the ideologies of CM are presented aren't that appealing. Let us take Winter. Why would anyone support Winter? Ok, it means a few things ICly, but to me they have always been presented in a way that is completely unconvincing and I can't see why any realistic person would think that the regime is a good thing as it is. Maybe a convenient thing, but EVERY regime needs genuine adherents. And summer? Generally I found that people had only very vague notions of what summer was ICly, even if they supported it.

                      To me - and I admit, my characters - this makes it difficult to give a damn about any IC ideal.
                      Any ruler who keeps a chained midget at his feet is alright in my books. Let's be honest: it's a sign of a stable and well-run society.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Cedrick View Post
                        Seemingly Big B tolerates open attacks on the nobility as an institution as well. My character, who supports idealistic notions chivalry etc. doesn't know what to think. How can any ruler tolerate this?

                        ...

                        My personal sentiment has always been the same: Make demotions and promotions easier to obtain. Let us say that a courtier is slacking on a sixth link job? Fire them and demote them and let people know that the castle is seeking someone to do it. However, this demotion need not be the end of their presence in the IB. If it is easier to crawl back up, maybe people are more willing to run risks?
                        Well, as far as the Nobility bashing, maybe there's an IC reason, such as Boreas not favoring the bulk of the current Nobility and therefore not caring what anyone says about them. Not that this is necessarily the case, just throwing it out there.

                        The problem with the whole promotion/demotion thing, especially at the moment is that most of the higher level positions on the Chain, as well as all Intrinsic promotions, require Crown approval. When the Crown doesn't play, or isn't regularly available, that's hard to get done. -.-
                        Lady Avaria, Royal Archivist & Dean of the Royal Collegium
                        Collegium Dean since 30.10.8
                        Royal Archivist since 10.11.2
                        Previously Senior Chronicler and Counselor


                        StoryPlotter Skelly says, "I always knew Avi was evil ... Now I have logged evidence!"

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Avaria View Post
                          Well, as far as the Nobility bashing, maybe there's an IC reason, such as Boreas not favoring the bulk of the current Nobility and therefore not caring what anyone says about them. Not that this is necessarily the case, just throwing it out there.

                          The problem with the whole promotion/demotion thing, especially at the moment is that most of the higher level positions on the Chain, as well as all Intrinsic promotions, require Crown approval. When the Crown doesn't play, or isn't regularly available, that's hard to get done. -.-
                          Regarding the former, I meant the noblity and chivlary as institutions. And even if Big B doesn't love Avi, he strikes me as the type of guy who should at least strive to keep up appearances. Currently that is not the case.

                          The latter, I agree with. I have always thought that moving people between jobs and intrinsic ranks, both up and down, was far too slow and unwieldly, even with queenie around. That process should be streamlined. And today we have been queenless since april, I think.
                          Any ruler who keeps a chained midget at his feet is alright in my books. Let's be honest: it's a sign of a stable and well-run society.

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                          • #14
                            I just feel like adding something, maybe it would make the game feel more courtly and create the "great divide" we so long for.

                            But well, I wish we used job titles more in greeting people. Some are used [Handmaiden, Sheriff, Sergeant, Mistress] but why not go all out and start saying:

                            "Good morning Director Anton" or
                            "Good morning Guild-Mistress Kalare" or
                            "Good morning Chronicller Ferena"

                            Just makes you think "Oh damn, Guild-Mistress? Sounds fancy she's got to be better than that sera Lorelei we keep hearing about.

                            Also adds a bit more to a favour kind of side, if someone said:

                            "Good morning Senior Awakener Anton"


                            He'd be like "Eh? Use a real title please!" Where's if they picked a favourite Guild of his he'd think the opposite.

                            If unsure then maybe only their equals and lessers could say it, so Courtiers don't say informal job titles to Commoner etc and if they do shows great favour?

                            I dunno, just a point that I feel could make it more Courtly and certainly the divide between fellow OBers or IBers more felt and apparent.

                            Louis Williams
                            "In our age there is no such thing as ‘keeping out of politics.’ All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred and schizophrenia."

                            "Although many of us consider ourselves forward-thinkers, we still cling tenaciously to the old values of the system."

                            "Between two groups of people who want to make inconsistent kinds of worlds, I see no remedy but force"

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Anton View Post
                              I just feel like adding something, maybe it would make the game feel more courtly and create the "great divide" we so long for.

                              But well, I wish we used job titles more in greeting people. Some are used [Handmaiden, Sheriff, Sergeant, Mistress] but why not go all out and start saying:

                              "Good morning Director Anton" or
                              "Good morning Guild-Mistress Kalare" or
                              "Good morning Chronicller Ferena"

                              Just makes you think "Oh damn, Guild-Mistress? Sounds fancy she's got to be better than that sera Lorelei we keep hearing about.

                              Also adds a bit more to a favour kind of side, if someone said:

                              "Good morning Senior Awakener Anton"


                              He'd be like "Eh? Use a real title please!" Where's if they picked a favourite Guild of his he'd think the opposite.

                              If unsure then maybe only their equals and lessers could say it, so Courtiers don't say informal job titles to Commoner etc and if they do shows great favour?

                              I dunno, just a point that I feel could make it more Courtly and certainly the divide between fellow OBers or IBers more felt and apparent.

                              Louis Williams
                              Strangely enough, for both Temor and Cedrick people took to calling them by title more or less automatically...

                              In any case, I think that it would be a good idea if titles showed up on the who to a much higher degree. I had a brief stint on ICO, and I promise ya that the fact that there was a title in front of my character's name gave her LOADS more attention and respect.
                              Any ruler who keeps a chained midget at his feet is alright in my books. Let's be honest: it's a sign of a stable and well-run society.

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