Deity points post

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This is a copy of Dasquian's post on Priests. (February 2006)


Hello, Since it's going to become relevant reasonably soon, I wanted to make sure that everyone is up to speed with the concept of deity points. I think I mentioned them briefly when I put excommunicate in, and on the talker a few times. I also did a newspaper interview about them which some of you might have read. In any case, if you haven't heard of them before, this is all you need to know!

Thematically, deity points represent a pool of belief power that a deity has put aside as a "theological loss leader" - the deity is prepared to give back some of its belief power for generic miracle work, rewarding the faithful and other such gubbins to gain new followers and retain existing ones. Mechanically, deity points are a pool of points, equivalent in value to guild points, which can be used by all followers and priests of a deity in a range of useful ways, of which currently none exist.


So how do I use deity points?

Well, currently, you can't. When something comes in that uses them, the coder will let you know and explain exactly how it uses them. It may be automatic, it may not, it'll depend on the situation.

How do I tell how many deity points my god has?

Again, currently, you can't. This is a very raw system and so not a lot of time has been spent on putting in a gazillion convenience features, though I am definitely in favour of there being such twiddly bits in the future. High Priests will probably be privvy to accurate information about a deity's DP situation, and followers will be able to get a rough estimate somehow too. The number of DP a deity has will depend partially on the number of followers and priests.

How will deity points get restocked?

Deity points do not recharge over time like guild points. They are recharged whenever a priest prays. Some of the guild points spent in praying will go into the deity point pool. This already happens, so every god currently has a full pool :) Other ways to restock deity points may appear in the future, of course.

So what sort of stuff will this be for?

Generally, it's for things that will help every follower and priest somehow. An example that I have no plans for whatsoever is that you might be able to get a free restore at the high altar of your deity, as long as the deity has DP to pay for it. Or perhaps the High Priest will be able to set the deity point pool to be automatically spent on making all rituals all followers and priests perform be cheaper or easier.

How does this tie into excommunication?

An excommunicated player will not be able to spend deity points in any way. That means that in the above examples, they wouldn't ever be granted the bonus bless at the High Altar, or get the bonus on using their rituals. Excommunicated priests will also not contribute to the deity point pool when they pray.

Why not?

If there are jackasses willfully draining the deity point pool for kicks, it's going to mess it up for everyone. Excommunication is to protect the deity point pool from abuse, and I have no intention of it being anything more.

What about Pishe? She has no followers.

Good question... Pishe will lose out on some uses of deity points, since there will be no one to accumulate them for. However, the priesthood will be able to use them themselves, so in some respects they're better off - accumulating DP for themselves, and spending it :) This one will all depend on what comes later, but Pishe is undeniably an interesting and unique case.

Then, what about Sandelfon? He has loads of followers and not so many priests.

Another good question (that came up on the talker when I mentioned it). This is where the negative feedback aspect of deity points comes into play. Let's assume for now that deity points are providing something popular and useful, that many worshippers are interested in.

As a worshipper, you are dependent on priests to make DP available for your use. This means that it's in your interests to have a high priest:worshipper ratio. So when you're choosing your deity, as well as other considerations such as worshipper rituals and alignment range, people will need to consider how much competition there is for DP. This may make less popular-with-worshippers gods such as Fish a better choice, if the DP perks are good enough. On the other hand, gods like Sandelfon are still that popular for a reason, so it depends where your priorities lie.

As a priest, however, you have a larger flock with fewer shepherds; this might well put you in demand and if deity points are used to provide something tangible (which, as a freebie, I'm telling you they will be), then that's oppportunity for profit right there. On the other hand, that's hard work. So for priests, it's an opportunity and a burden. Priests in less popular churches may find that they can provide more to the worshippers they do have, however.

I really hate the idea of all of this. I hate you so much. :(((

Luckily for you, all of this is planned to avoid affecting you in any kind of negative way! If you hate the idea of all this, then just ignore it. Just ignore the freebies and nothing will change for the worse - you may inadvertantly contribute to the deity point pool by praying, but it'll be no skin off your nose. And who knows, you may get benefits like more powerful rituals for no effort on your part. If you really hate the idea so much that you refuse to even benefit from its existence, get yourself excommunicated - then people will know you are no good to them :p