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Jasband
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PostSubject: Agents & Specialists   Mon Apr 29, 2013 1:13 am

Discuss Agents here. Currently:

Agents are specialists that perform special, non-military functions. They will:

A. Cost Gold to recruit - probably a lot.
B. Have limits based on buildings (e.g. Diplomatic Entourages - or "Emissaries" - will be limited by, say, "Offices of Foreign Affairs").
C. Travel just like armies, but at a faster speed.

So far, we've decided on Emissaries (described above), Professors/Scientists (they're in charge of research projects), and Spymasters/Assassins (should be obvious).

Profs/Scientists are used to both trade technologies and conduct joint research. Players should start with 4 (or however many concurrent research projects we decide on). If a Proffescientist is killed or kidnapped during the exchange of tech, [blah blah blah]. If he's killed during joint research, [blah blah blah]. (AFAIK, we haven't decided on penalties, but I wasn't paying attention to the argument).

Also, [something else about a case then the bookkeeping doesn't have to be true, which makes me suspicious].
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Lord William

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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Mon Apr 29, 2013 10:54 am

Quite so, but a professor doesn't need to be sent to trade technologies. All you really need to do is send the theory you have unlocked to the receiving faction by any means, really. This can be on a trade caravan, an emissary, an army or even by a professor. However, I think it's only logical that if you do indeed send your professor to their university or something to actually teach the thing, the receiving party unlocks the research faster.

Now, when you conduct joint research, you do have to send your professor. In addition, you don't get the benefits of the research until your professor returns to your university, research centre or capital. If he is kidnapped or killed during any time between the completion of the joint research and returning to spread the results to his faction, the person whose professor got eliminated loses the research entirely. If he was kidnapped, the professor's kidnappers have a chance of gaining information from him (that is, steal technologies).

The case about the bookkeeping not having to be correct comes from the spymasters being in play. Let's say you send your emissary to Falador to negotiate a trade agreement. In truth, you're actually sending your spymaster to assassinate the king of Falador to allow his political enemy, who's a lot more positive to your influence, to rise to power. You don't need to mark in your bookkeeping that you're moving your spymaster and that the emissary is remaining in your capital, for example. Simply put, moving your spymaster is suspicious to the extent where telling people you're moving yours nullifies the point of him. Hence the spymaster being an exception from the accurate bookkeeping rule.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:57 pm

I don't think the sending of Head Scientists (I refuse to call them by name name 'Professor' because their head job is RESEARCHING TECHNOLOGIES NOT TECHING FUHRHDHSRHFVDISRGGESG) should even be allowed to trade technologies. The only reason you could send a Head Scientist somewhere is for a Joint Research.

(To be honest I feel like we should refer to them in Plural, since it's a scientific Team)

I feel like for emissaries, you only have to state in your Bookkeeping: "I'm sending an Emissary!" And in the main message body/PM you specify which, and the other person just has to either hope you're correct or cease the guy and make sure.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Mon Apr 29, 2013 1:49 pm

The main job of a professor is never teaching...

In any case, why the heck would you not be allowed to send him? If you really want to send your professor, who am I to prevent it?
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Mon Apr 29, 2013 3:01 pm

Thanks for the explanation William, I'll update the first post later tonight.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Mon Apr 29, 2013 3:16 pm

It's confusing, just call him a Lead/Head Scientist.

Also, if you want to send a Lead/Head Scientist, I mean, you can, but it's not gonna do anything unless it's for a joint research. Doin so would just be stupid.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Mon Apr 29, 2013 3:53 pm

Why wouldn't it be useful? It's far more efficient when someone teaches you the things than when you try to study it yourself.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Mon Apr 29, 2013 11:52 pm

I could argue that with: Depends on the teacher.

In any case, I would prefer the terminology switch, as it's clearer IMHO. Other than that, looks good.

I also assume that Envoys can have military escorts for protection?
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Tue Apr 30, 2013 12:15 am

Limes wrote:
I also assume that Envoys can have military escorts for protection?

That's why I wanted to go with a group term like "Diplomatic Entourage". It implies that the diplomat travels with retainers, bodyguards, and guides - everything he needs to safely and comfortably get from Point A to Point B. I don't think we need to bog down these diplomatic Agents with military escorts (remember, Agents will move faster than armies).
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Tue Apr 30, 2013 7:11 am

Well, if you're REALLY paranoid, and you really wanted to protect the entourage, why not send an army and sacrifice speed for safety?
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Tue Apr 30, 2013 10:38 am

Limes wrote:
Well, if you're REALLY paranoid, and you really wanted to protect the entourage, why not send an army and sacrifice speed for safety?

Well, at this point, sending soldiers into unclaimed territory is a declaration of war, right? Even more so if it's the territory owned by another player. This is a case when we shouldn't overcomplicate things. The bodyguards traveling with the diplomats will, in most cases, ensure that they reach their destination safely; what happens there, however, is mostly up to the player who owns the territory. Or, if one Diplomatic Entourage meets the DE of another faction in a neutral location, then neither side has an advantage.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Tue Apr 30, 2013 12:07 pm

I will have to side with Lime in this case, and the reason is quite simple: if a player did want to send soldiers to guard their specialists, why would I not allow it? They have every right to do it. Now, I do think that a specialist is simply one person, an emissary is an emissary, no one else. If you send him alone, he'll be defenceless. I'll be willing to let him be accompanied by 50 soldiers without slowing him down, but that's it. The best protection he can have is simply not revealing the path he is taking.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Tue Apr 30, 2013 12:49 pm

Yes, there should be risks and benefits for everything,

However, I do not believe that these entourages should be a single person, with the exception of paragons. The people you send for joint research should be a team of Scientists, the people you send for diplomatic relations should be a Band of Ambassadors and Diplomats, and the people you send for spy work should be a Spy Ring. These all would still be able to be additionally protected by an Armed Force, should the player desire.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:02 pm

I'm a bit reluctant on making the specialists teams. I mean, realism has its place, but like you've said before, no one actually sends an entire team to simply teach your allies some technology. In addition, if you need to negotiate a simple treaty, why send an entire team of ambassadors, a team of diplomats? Spies work as individuals, and if not them, assassins do, at least. Less chance of discovery. I'd like to keep the professor, emissary and spymaster as individual units.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:38 pm

Spies work as individuals generally, but oftentimes you have a whole team of spies in a region, independently gathering intelligence. And then there has to be people who retrieve the information, sometimes missions require multiple people.

For Ambassadors, well, you oftentimes have a bunch of people in an embassy representing a country.

As for teaching Techs, well, if you're doing a one-off seminar, however, if you're doing several classes at once during the span of a turn, you'd need a team of Scientists.

It's not too hard to explain.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Wed May 01, 2013 6:45 pm

Our beloved Citrus Sea Captain insists that Agents be considered teams - I'm personally more inclined in this direction as well. The problem is, referring to them in the singular form is much easier. Just look at the team designations:

Diplomacy: Diplomatic Entourage
Scientists: Research/Science Team (?)
Espionage: Spy Team
Conversion: Missionary Group

The terminology is a bit odd, but we can make it work.

Then again, having them be individuals also works, and I like William's solution for things like protecting Diplomats (having a low limit to the number of guards while preserving the faster speed). I really can't decide, so we must do this the only fair way.

I'm thinking of a number between 1 and 10. Each of you gets one guess. GO!
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Wed May 01, 2013 7:03 pm

Harharhar. I'm the GM, I say! Razz
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Wed May 01, 2013 8:01 pm

Lord William wrote:
Harharhar. I'm the GM, I say! Razz

He's got a point here, Limebro. I think it'd just be simpler to treat Agents as individuals.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Wed May 01, 2013 8:38 pm

1. The proper name of a Spy Team would be a Spy Ring
2. I'm probably going to end up referring to them as a group anyways (Just like How I'll always refer to them as Scientists/Researchers), I doubt that the singular or plural forms matter though.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Thu May 02, 2013 8:53 am

Limes wrote:
1. The proper name of a Spy Team would be a Spy Ring
2. I'm probably going to end up referring to them as a group anyways (Just like How I'll always refer to them as Scientists/Researchers), I doubt that the singular or plural forms matter though.

It'll definitely matter if they are single units, and you say "I send my Scientists to Mage Training Arena to jointly research Astrophysics with the rocks living there." Well, you have, at the start, 4 Scientists. One Scientist - one Agent - is used to conduct joint research, but if you say "my Scientists", William won't know if you want to send 1, 2, 3, or 4. I know the standard in the current game is to refer to them in the plural, but we're going the Total War route here.
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Thu May 02, 2013 10:40 am

"My first team of scientists"
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PostSubject: Re: Agents & Specialists   Wed May 15, 2013 8:24 pm

New Agent: Commander. See Military & Siege for the description.
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