Foundational Principles

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The Foundational Principles are the core principles that guide development of Camelot Unchained, as enunciated by Mark Jacobs and Andrew Meggs. Here they are, in order of their release by City State Entertainment.


Foundational Principle #1[edit | edit source]

Be willing to take risks even if fortune doesn't always favor the bold

Released: February 7th, 2013

Summary: This Foundational Principle lays out CSE's underlying principle for the entire game.

  • Be willing to take chances
  • Don't focus on making the game for everyone
  • Don't be afraid to angering potential customers
  • Don't conform to MMO tropes unless needed

Foundational Principle #2[edit | edit source]

RvR isn't the end game, it's the only game

Released: February 8th, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark talks about why Camelot Unchained is so different from games that have RvR/PvP "tacked on" to the main game.

  • TriRealm game, which is a RvR-focused game
  • Not a RvR-centric game, nor the RvR a "bolt on" feature of a larger system
  • Focus on crafters being the primary source of gear by having:
    • No gear drops from NPCs
    • No gear from quests or tasks
    • No gear tokens
  • Progression by fighting, helping out in RvR or crafting (No PvE Progression)
  • Mostly open map
  • Limited travel options
  • CC so smaller groups have a chance against larger ones

Foundational Principle #3[edit | edit source]

You should always hold the hands of little children while crossing the street but...

Released: Februrary 11th, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark talks about the effect of too much "hand holding" in modern MMORPGs.

  • Bring back challenge by not showing how to do everything, or allow players to make mistakes etc.
  • Don't trade creative freedom to try to appeal to more subscribers
  • No risk, no reward w/ examples of the types of things they're looking to avoid:
    • Quest paths that basically do the quests for you
    • Auction houses
    • Readily available respecs, or constantly changing your build

Foundational Principle #4[edit | edit source]

Choice Matters!

Released: February 13th, 2013

Summary: In this Foundational Principle, Mark talks about the importance of player choice. This is one of the big mantras of the game.

  • What your character does will effect not only their skills, but their stats as well
  • Remove absolute gear restrictions (although, practical ones will remain)
  • Freedom to make mistakes, by adding consquences to actions (like carrying too much stuff, or wearing metal as a lightning caster)
  • Meaning character creation choices with options that will have an effect in the game:

Foundational Principle #5[edit | edit source]

Gold Sellers Still Suck

Released: Februrary 15th, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark talks about his "favorite people in the multiverse" (sarcasm), those people or companies who make money off the selling of gold in MMORPGs.

  • Hard line against gold sellers
  • Won't compromise game experience for extra subs that gold sellers would bring
  • Will not take money to turn a blind eye
  • The way the game is built will make it harder for gold sellers to get things to sell
  • Won't hesitate to ban if necessary

Foundational Principle #6[edit | edit source]

Rock, paper, scissors, 'natch!

Released: February 18th, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark talks about the impact of Rock-Paper-Scissors mechanics in Camelot Unchained.

  • Better game for it's niche market
  • Non mirrored approach to the Realms, races, and classes
  • Having each choice feel more unique
  • Realizing that it will be harder to balance, but makes for a better game

Foundational Principle #7[edit | edit source]

Crafting shouldn't induce Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Released: February 22nd, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark talks about the crafting system in Camelot Unchained and how it needs to avoid being too "old school."

  • Crafting only reliable way to get armor, weapons and most items
  • Cosmetic and low-level items may be obtained from venders
  • No "rare drops" from NPCs
  • Crafting will have it's own crafting class
  • Leveling system make it so someone can't just dump a bunch of money to get a top tier crafter instantly
  • Progressing in crafting won't require you to create large amounts of the same goods
  • Items break and decay over time, so keep the market fresh
  • Three tracks of crafting:
    • Journeyman: some repairing, a few mundane items
    • Master: magical and most mundane items
    • Artisan: very powerful magical items
  • Possible co-op crafting

Foundational Principle #8[edit | edit source]

This should be a chaotic game with epic surprises at every turn

Released: February 26th, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark talks about random number generation, epic surprises, and other things to make a game feel more like a world.

  • Slight randomness to where you won't always know the outcome
  • Strong and fun critical hit/miss system.
  • Such be random, and very rare to create "water color moments"
  • Randomness to the environment, either over time or due to by player effects

Foundational Principle #9[edit | edit source]

Is it time for forced socialization to make a comeback in MMORPGs?

Released: February 28th, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark revisits the concept of forced socialization.

  • Communicating to the player base, forming the larger community from the development of the game
  • Encourage server, realm and class pride
  • Encourage group play, and cooperation
  • Create economic dependency between combat and crafting class
  • Reward group cooperation

Foundational Principle #10[edit | edit source]

Pride, pride, everywhere pride…

Released: March 7th, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark talks about the importance of the various types of pride in an MMORPG.

  • Help make realm pride by providing a realm that players can identify with
  • That every realm has their own goals, and neither of them are truly right or wrong; just different
  • Give racial pride by offering unique and interesting races
  • Non-mirrored class to help give class pride
  • Balancing that where all sides are complaining the other two are OP
  • Guild can get guildhalls, and encourage cooperation between guilds

Foundational Principle #11[edit | edit source]

Sandboxes are great fun for kids and adults too!

Released: March 13th, 2013

Summary: Here, Mark discusses what a sandbox game is, and whether Camelot Unchained is one of them.

  • Camelot Unchained is not a true sandbox MMORPG, therefore it's not going to call itself one
  • It will have sandbox elements though
  • It will have defined classes, but no inherent restrictions on armor and weapon use
  • Eschewing of a lot of PvE to provide an open experience with no overlining script to follow
  • Players get the tools to help create their world

Foundational Principle #12[edit | edit source]

Speed matters!

Released: March 25th, 2013

Summary: Here, Andrew talks about the importance of graphics, gameplay, and performance, and how they are interrelated.

  • Game will be built to support a large number of players in the same area
  • Smooth framerate for a lot of players more important then highest rate possible
  • The focus will be on smooth gameplay, rather then highly detailed graphics
  • Programmers and artists will be on the same page

Foundational Principle #13[edit | edit source]

Chaos goes Boing!

Released: March 28th, 2013

Summary: Here, Andrew talks about the role of randomness, craziness, and general chaos in a modern MMORPG.

  • Adding physics to gameplay to open up chaotic possibilities, like getting crushed by a broken wall.
  • Missed spells still exist, and couple other things.
  • Avoid griefing, but still allow for wildly fun results.

Foundational Principle #14[edit | edit source]

CSE SUBSCRIBER PROMISES

Released: July 17th, 2013

Summary: A very significant Foundational Principle. Here, Mark talks about his commitment to the way City State Entertainment will treat its Backers and future players. This is considered a must-read, on many levels.

  1. We will never lie to you, ever.
  2. We will remain responsive to you through our forums and Customer Service for as long as the game is running.
  3. We will fight Gold Sellers/Power Leveling services within our game from day one.
  4. We will stay in touch with our game and our players.
  5. We will always treat you well.
  6. We will continue to update/improve the game for as long as we are taking your money.
  7. We will release the compiled server code if we shut the game down.
  8. No copy protection required.
  9. We respect your privacy
  10. Our minimum specs are that, not a dead-end.
  11. If you find a bug in our game we thank you not attack you.

Foundational Principle #15[edit | edit source]

Stretching is good for the body but be careful not to overdo it!

Released: February 12th, 2014

Summary: Here, Mark lays out why Stretch Goals are an important part of any crowdfunded game, and explains how CSE will deal with them for Camelot Unchained, "now and forever."

  • Rule #1 - Don't add stretch goals to the game unless they add something the majority would liket o see
  • Rule #2 - Don't over promise just to raise additional funding.
  • Rule #3 - Don't promise stretch goals that require adding a lot of new people too quickly
  • Rule #4 - Don't be like a horse wearing blinders when laying out a stretch goal.
  • Rule #5 - Don't continue to add new stretch goals even if the donations are continuing to rise
  • Rule #6 - Don't try to fit everything in for launch.
  • Rule #7 - Never forget what you said to the backers when the first sought funding.

Significant posts that touch on the Foundational Principles[edit | edit source]

1) Top Ten Questions - Top Ten Questions. Here, Mark addresses some questions about the project, including the ever-popular question regarding Realm Ranks.

2) Clear as Mudd - Clear as Mudd. Here, Mark resorts to "one of his favorite things in the multiverse," using a movie reference to answer some additional questions regarding Realm Ranks.