Religious Progression and Dedication Theorycrafting

So I understand that there are going to be Economic, Militaristic, Scientific, and Religious themed nodes. Currently, leadership for these nodes is determined in their own unique ways. Militaristic leadership is determined by a duel of sorts, Scientific leaders are democratically elected, Economic leaders buy their way into power, and Religious leaders come into power through religious dedication. NOTE: This is what I understand from the information that has been given to the community as of 4/28/17.

What does religious dedication look like? The current speculation is through quests aligned with each religion. What will these quests look like? They can't simply be "go here and kill an abomination, your god demands it," can they? I think that this example is definitely a strong possibility, but what if 'religious dedication' was much more dynamic?

Religions often have guidelines or 'tenets.' Let's give a few broad tenets that could potentially be associated with a fictional religion.
1. Do not eat the flesh of another being.
-In-game: Do not eat meat-themed food items.
2. Do not make the first blow against another man.
-In-game: Do not attack other humans unless attacked first.
3. Emblazon yourself with religious icons.
-In-game: Wear a holy symbol on your gear.
4. Goblins are abhorred and should be eliminated on sight.
-In-game: Attack Goblins whenever possible and do not consort with them.
5. Dragons are the symbol of the religion and are not to be attacked.
-Dragons are not to be attacked. Period.

Since AoC is a fictional world where Gods and Goddesses could be very blatantly involved, a player's progress could be justifiably tracked because "the Gods are watching." 'Dedication experience' could be accrued as players maintain their religious tenets while actively playing the game. 'Dedication experience' could also be lost if a player decides to, or accidentally, goes against a tenet. Maybe this would cause a loss of dedication experience, or would halt progression until redeemed. However, this does not necessarily mean that all is lost. There could be ways to redeem oneself. Ex. Going on a pilgrimage-themed quest, praying for forgiveness, making a sizable donation to the gods, etc.

There could be potential passive perks to being greatly dedicated to a religion. Ex. Access to minor holy powers, religious arms and armor, or extra perks against particular enemies of the religion.

My first thought is that these tenets could be quite limiting to gameplay since a religion would call for a player character to do, or not do, particular things. I argue that this would set religious gameplay apart from the norm and incentivize players in a unique way that differs from just having religions be 'factions' to be associated with.

When deciding to elect a religious head, players could be evaluated by their dedication experience. The leader would not be decided by their total dedication experience, but by their dedicated peers. Maybe something similar to how the Pope is chosen? The Gods could choose 10-20? religiously dedicated players to then decide which one of them is to be the leader of a Religious Node. These players would have to be past a certain threshold of dedication experience in order to be chosen, but do not have the have the most dedication experience. This would help prevent the top 20 religious players from always being chosen and allow for newer, dedicated players to get elected.

I think that religious dedication should stand somewhat apart from other types of gameplay in order to provide new experiences for players that come to AoC.

What are your thoughts on this? I look forward to critical feedback and other ideas. :)

Comments

  • I don't have a big experience with MMOS but i have actually never seen a religions system, i think because it would involve a great part of role-playing, also because it's not easy to create. But what you mentioned seems like a good system, detailed and fun for those who aim following a religious path in AoC, but can it be impactful for the world ? Can it provide change as desired by devs? If it is an evil religion i think it can lead to that, but if it mainly involves peace, then i think it will limitate the PvX in favor of a good character which can mainly focus on crafting and trading. Idk
  • Interesting concept here. I like what you did. This woul certainly provide for an interesting dynamic to the religious node gameplay!
  • A religious system would be awesome.
    We know there are sunken and destroyed cities/civilisations.

    Maybe it would be possible to travel and discover strues/totems of forgotten deities.
    Thus you could decide to become a headpriest of that God/Godess if you have a cleric class/subclass.

    And the deity and it's bonuses would grow in power according to the number and overall "devotion" of the followers. Maybe rellgious nodes would be pilgrimage paths.

    Who knows.
  • To me, your ideas sound amazing!

    The system you are proposing would definitely be an excuse for roleplaying and would give the different inhabitants of the world a distinct feel. I'd really like to see guilds revolving around the mandates of the different religions and act acording to its ideals. You need a some healers to back up a town defence? Then you shall look for a member of X religion/guild since they focus on support and helping those in need. That would be fun and engaging.

    I'd also like to see faiths with varying degrees of alignment. Maybe some that are outright evil or morally questionable. The followers of said religions would be much more fleshed out and would add narrative to the world.
  • I love the impact of religion in a truly organic environment like AOC. Especially if there are multiple variations, old and new, like in the real world. In an open world setting with choice being the driving force behind all things, I'd like to see different religions impact different cities in cultural ways. Just think about how Christianity was brought into form during the Renaissance. It would be interesting to see different artistic styles from city to city based on culturally influenced architecture.

    On the flip side, what would happen if a city didn't have any religious influence? What kind of social culture would the city operate on?

    I'm very interested to see where Intrepid takes the ideas of religion/atheism, invention/tradition, natural/artificial.
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