Greetings, fellow Wurmians of the Freedom Isles!
I have a suggestion to offer that I have considered from time to time since my early days in Wurm. My thoughts have returned to the idea as of late, and I figured it might be time to lay this down in the forums for consideration.
The suggestion is to offer something new to the PVE side of the game- Their Majesties' Favor.
I've long wondered why the king and queen of the Freedom Isles are so uninvolved with their subjects. We pay taxes in the form of upkeep to obtain ownership and protection on our deeds, and the king kindly places guards in guard towers wherever we deign to build them. Those two things alone are quite helpful, but the king and queen are otherwise resigned to abiding in their castle somewhere secretive and we never otherwise here from their majesties.
The Freedom Isles are a vast and wondrous place, and their subjects are quite faithful and creative across the realm. I would think any king and queen would be proud to rule over such a kingdom, and might strive to reward in some way those among their subjects who are the most inclined to support and defend the lands so as to encourage more of the same in others.
Thus I would request the king and queen that they consider bestowing their favor on those of their subjects that would seek it, and if I may be so bold as to suggest some ways in which the king and queen could offer to bestow favor on their subjects, I would humbly offer the following: To obtain their majesties' favor:
Let the king or queen place bounties on various creatures in their lands from time to time.
If the land is overrun with unicorns, let their majesties offer favor and perhaps a small bit of coin to those who would slay them and deliver their unbutchered corpses to one of the kingdom's cities.
When the king or queen hears word that goblins are run amok, let them offer a bounty on them, allowing citizens deliver their unbutchered corpses to one of the kingdom's cities for a small price in coin, and favor from the king and queen.
Does her majesty desire some tamed animal from the wilds to place in her gardens or the queen's forest? I am sure one from among her subjects would be honored to provide, if she were to make the desire known.
Does the king desire some number of beasts for a tourney? Be it bears or wolves, hell-hounds or crocks, I am sure his subjects would take up the challenge to tame the beats and deliver them at his request!
Let the king and queen also make it known to their subjects when there is a need for various items or resources, from building supplies to food items.
If the king requires supplies for building from time to time, let his subjects know so they can serve the kingdom by providing what is needed. Be it brick and mortar, planks or nails in bulk, or any other thing, let those who might seek their majesties' favor have the opportunity to provide what the kingdom requires.
If the kingdom's food stocks should need filling, let their majesties make known to their people the need- be it wheat, barely, corn or any other thing that might be stored for the kingdom's security in times of need.
Do their majesties' require cotton or wemp, woven fabric, wool, or leather? Should the king or queen have need of it I am sure their subjects would make their offerings if the king or queen were to make their wishes known.
Choice wine or other drink for king's winery, or choice meats for his larder- let their majesties but ask, and those who would seek their favor will provide what their majesties require.
For those who rally to defend the lands from the rifts that occasionally plague the lands:
Let the king offer favor to those that attend, offering their swords and their blood to repel the invaders, not forgetting those that stand in support providing aid and healing to those that take the brunt of the assault.
Let the king and queen also consider offering quests and missions to subjects and to settlements, when the king or queen has special requests to make or when they desires to personally test the resolve of their subjects.
Let the king or queen send notice to a player or to a settlement that a quest or mission has been offered, and if they accept the challenge, give the details needed to fulfill the quest. Much could be offered here, and their majesties imaginations could, I am sure, envision many tests and challenges for their subjects, with favor and other rewards for those deemed worthy in the completion of a task.
With regard to the favor earned from their majesties, I humbly suggest the following:
Let the favor that the king and queen grant to their subjects be counted toward the subject that has earned it.
Let all the favor obtained by all of a settlement's citizens be counted toward the settlement where they dwell.
Let the king and queen take into consideration the total favor earned by settlements that are in an alliance with one another.
Let the king and queen grant benefits, titles, and privileges to players, to settlements, and to alliances based on the amount of favor that has been earned.
To the subject:
Give them the challenge of earning the title of "Knight of the Freedom Isles", granting them their own coat of arms that they and they alone can create and wear in the form of a customized tabard. Also allow for the subject to craft a coat of arms plaque(s) to be displayed on walls or atop a suitable pieces of furniture. Their majesties can provide a list of images, color and design options that a subject can choose from in the creation of thier personal coat of arms.
To the settlement:
May the king and queen allow various blessings to the settlement that have earned enough of the king's and queen's favor. This can be in the form of slightly increased skill gain in a chosen skill or skill set, slightly faster creation times, slight increases in the rarity window, or other similar benefits. The king and queen should choose at random to bless a settlement with one or more of these benefits for a limited time in a random way at their majesties' discretion. Let these benefits favor anyone working within the boarders of a settlement while the majesties' blessing is in effect.
Grant settlements the right to create their own customized wagon covers. Customized wagons should be craftable only by the mayor of the settlement, and require a fee paid from the settlement's coffers into the majesties' treasuries. Their majesties should provide a list of images, color and design options that a mayor can choose from in the customization of their settlement's wagons.
Also grant the settlement that has earned enough of their majesties' favor the ability to choose a customized settlement banner. Require that the settlement's banners can only be crafted by the mayor of the settlement, and at a reasonable fee that the settlement pays from her coffers into the majesties' treasury.
To the alliances that have earned enough of their majesties' favor:
May the king and queen allow various blessings to the settlements of alliances that have earned enough of the king's and queen's favor. These blessings could be along the same lines as blessings that could be granted to individual settlements, and could possibly stack with any other "blessing" that their majesties have bestowed on a settlement at the time the alliance also receives a blessing from their majesties. These benefits would also apply to anyone laboring within the boarders of a settlement belonging to the alliance during the time of the event.
Grant alliances the right to create their own customized alliance flag. Alliance flags should be craftable by mayors of settlements within the alliance, with coin paid from the settlement's coffers into their majesties' treasuries.
Grant alliances to choose a personalized crest that appears at the top of all Freedom Kingdom tall banners placed within their deed's boarders. These crests would not appear at the top of any tall kingdom banners placed off deed or on a deed not part of the alliance that owns the crest. It should not cost the alliance anything to craft these banners, it would be a small benefit granted by the king and queen to the alliance that has earned the right to display their crest on all Freedom Kingdom tall banners placed within their alliance's settlements.
Something to consider:
A settlement and/or an alliance should have to continually earn the blessing of their majesties in order to receive the random settlement/alliance bonuses or any other such temporary blessing. To this end, the ability to acquire an such blessing from the king or queen should be tied to a favor pool that degrades over time. One should not be permitted to earn their majesties favor and then simply ignore them. The chance of any blessing or bonus from their majesties should come to an end. This could possibly work by having two ways of recording favor a settlement and alliance have.
There should be a pool of "active" favor (called something else if necessary), that fades a bit over time just like deed bonuses the deities provide through the sacrificing of certain items. This favor level would determine if a settlement is eligible for random bonuses, quests, or rewards as the king and queen seem fit to bestow. This active level of favor is also what would be tallied from the settlements in an alliance to determine if an alliance is eligible for these rewards.
There should be an overall record of all favor ever earned by a settlement and by an alliance, and this overall record would determine when a settlement and an alliance are eligible for the customized heraldry items. A settlement that joins an alliance would not have it's overall record of previous favor added to the alliance- only new favor generated by that settlement would go to the overall favor an alliance has earned. If an alliance is ever disbanded, the recorded favor of that alliance disappears forever. There should also be some penalty to the overall level of favor recorded for an alliance if a settlement leaves, but I can't address at this time exactly what that should look like, but it should be taken into account.
Humbly submitted for their majesties' consideration,
Duke of Oakheart