Territory control system is one of the unique features of Gloria Victis. It will not only be strictly connected to the player-driven economy, but will also involve entire nations in massive conflicts, not just the most powerful guilds. How?
It will be based on a feudal hierarchy. Each nation’s lands will consist of regions: a central, NPC-controlled one and the player-ruled ones. Unlike the other lands, the central region, holding a faction’s capital, will not be conquerable. Player-ruled regions will include territories, each of which will contain a number of parcels where guilds can build towns or castles. They will be the parent structures for keeps and resource extraction spots, although some of the latter will belong directly to the keeps.
The guild owning a castle or town will be the primary ruler of all the structures belonging to it. The rulers will be able to manage all the structures on their own, as well as rent the building parcels or existing buildings, or even transfer the whole structure to another guild. This way the owners would gain vassals who, in return for the charter, would be responsible for developing and defending the property given to them, and would help their seniors pay the taxes.
A town will offer its owners various economic benefits, such as the option to build a marketplace and rent stalls to the other players, to tax the trade transactions and receive income or to construct advanced crafting workbenches or ships.
On the other hand, owning a well-upgraded castle with massive stone walls, ballistas on towers and pots with boiling water mounted on top of the gates will highly increase the guild’s chances to withstand an enemy siege. Not to mention that the castle owners will be able to hire a greater number of better skilled guards and craft advanced siege machines. The shape of castles will depend on the topography of the locations, but their main purpose remains the same: defense.
Keeps are medium-sized structures designed to provide moderate defensive strength. They can be upgraded as well – a senior guild will be able to decide if they want to develop the keep with an emphasis on economy or the military, or a mix of both. Just like with large structures, a guild will be able to rent existing buildings to the other players from all around the nation, or even to transfer the whole keep to another guild.
There are also resource extraction spots, such as farms and mines – the most valuable of them will belong to player-ruled keeps, towns and castles. Although they can be upgraded only by the owner of the parent structure, all of the countrymen will be able to collect resources, so they are able to craft everything they need – weapons and armor. Entire nations will get involved in territory control conflicts, as it’s crucial to control extraction points and their parent structures.
Developing the structures will be a game in itself. With a wide variety of materials to use and directions to follow with the upgrades, the guilds will be able to create a structure that fits their needs. It will be up to them to decide where to place temples offering respawn points, crafting workshops and houses; up to them to decide if the walls should be wooden or stone, or what the gate should look like. But even though the guilds decide how to develop their property, they can assign the rights to others. Moreover, all of their countrymen can help by bringing the required materials, so it becomes a common interest to keep the guilds strong, as it results in increasing the power of their nation.
Before conquering a town or castle, the invaders will have to set the siege camps – one or more if they can. A siege camp will allow them to deploy stationary siege machines, such as ballistas or trebuchets, and mobile ones – let’s just mention the rams and ladders. Siege camps will allow the attackers to respawn, but with a limited number of spawns. The defenders’ respawn points will be limited too, but their distribution and the number of spawns will also depend on the type of structure. If the invaders capture the main flag in the structure under attack, they will take over the town or castle. If the defenders manage to slay them all, they will keep their property.
To control the territory, a guild will have to conquer all of its towns and castles, and conquering a town or castle will be possible only when all the keeps belonging to it had been captured. This makes it unnecessary to use any artificial timers before allowing the guilds to start conquering, as pre-siege preparations will consist of actual actions of the players – having strong vassals taking care of the properties given to them will be important to maintain the safety of the borders of one’s territory. A strong alliance of powerful guilds would be able to capture not only the territory but even the whole region, drastically changing the political map.
Territory control system in Gloria Victis will be immersive, dynamic and it will really affect gameplay, making the conflicts engaging for both the wealthy guilds and the common players. It will be filled with politics but also with solidarity and reaching for the glory of the nation – all through bloody sacrifices, just like in the medieval times.