Continuing with its instructional series about nodes, the Ashes of Creation site has been updated with a new look at the advancement and destruction of nodes. The post starts with a brief look at how nodes are advanced and built up and what things they can influence such as, for instance, development areas where towns and civilization will appear.
Nodes go through a six stages as they "grow" in influence:
- Level 0 - Wilderness Stage: In this stage, the Development Area is empty and uninhabited.
- Level 1 - Expedition Stage: When a Node becomes an Expedition, a small group of NPCs and their compatriots will show up. The Development Area feels temporary at this level, reflective of what a group of people would carry with them - tents, campfires, etc.
- Level 2 - Encampment Stage: Once an Expedition becomes an Encampment, the group of NPCs grows in number, and more semi-permanent structures are in place. The Development Area feels a little more lived-in at this level, occupied with what people could build with wagons and simple tools - larger tents, smokehouses, and buildings constructed from local materials.
- Level 3 - Village Stage: At the Village Stage, the camp becomes a small frontier town. There are some permanent structures in place at this level, as well as the beginning of local Government. The Development Area feels permanent and lived in. You'll find buildings developed with more advanced materials, features such as stone and mortar, fences, and other common structures. The Village Stage will also unlock a Special Building that grants unique utility to its Node Type - Military, Economic, Divine or Scientific; we’ll share further details on those buildings in future entries in this series that cover each specific Node Type.
- Level 4 - Town Stage: When a Village becomes a Town, there are even more permanent structures, and a continued established local government. The development area feels well lived-in and developed at this point. Societies and Organizations begin to patronize the Town with ranking structures for players to participate in.
- Level 5 - City Stage: From a Town, a Node can change into a large City, which feels alive, bustling with development, and features the accommodations of a major player hub. The City Stage is populated with every major element of civilization, from guild halls to grand temples. Major embassies from other Nodes will also be present if diplomacy prevails. Relics can begin to appear within the vaults of these cities.
- Level 6 - Metropolis Stage: The final form of the Development Area is the Metropolis. At this stage of development, the Node is massive. This Metropolis will act as the central hub for all things in its region. Every organization and religion in the world will be represented within the city limits. Exchanges and markets will connect the world, while mansions and businesses will thrive within the Metropolis’ walls. The Metropolis will house a unique and powerful ability called a Superpower that is determined by its Node Type - Military, Economic, Divine or Scientific; we’ll share more details on each of those Node Types in future entries in this series.
Nodes will also gain experience based on player activity in the vicinity as well as from vassal nodes. They can also gain cultural experience depending on which race offers the "highest experience contribution". Lastly, nodes offer players events and accomplishments.
As with all things, advancement and growth for one group or area can lead to disuse or with others wanting to claim said benefits or locations for themselves, hence the destruction and "deleveling" of nodes.
All Nodes have an experience deficit that accumulates daily. The deficit is based on the current level of the Node; experience earned is applied to the deficit, then any excess is added to the Node’s experience pool. At the end of the day, any remaining deficit is subtracted from the Node’s experience pool. If the deficit would cause the Node to drop under the required experience for its current level, certain flags will appear to notify the citizens that all is not well in their Node. After a short period, if the atrophy is not addressed, the Node will then delevel.
Read the full post on the Ashes of Creation site.