Alignment/Stance System Overhaul - May 13th, 2022


Greetings Agonians,

This post is to provide an insight into our changes to the racial alliance, stance, and alignment system as we move towards our Steam closed beta. Please keep in mind this is a technical document created for internal use that we have decided to share to gather feedback.


This overhaul has the following goals:

  1. Make the stance/alignment system as intuitive as humanly possible
  2. Make race wars a thing again
  3. Make it difficult to grief and exploit the alignment system, particularly via blue blocking and similar tactics

The approach we've taken could be condensed as follows:

  1. Only two stances, lawful and lawless. Lawful is essentially hit protection/no friendly fire towards other lawful race allies. Lawless is essentially hostile stance (permanent rogue)
  2. Associating with evil players (basically anything that is not a lawful non-rogue) in any way is a lawless action and is straight-up impossible to perform unless you are already evil (for a lawful player, the only way is to enter lawless/unwelcome tiles)
  3. Consensual duel system to have the least amount of weird edge cases when it comes to dueling


  • Evil player: someone who is either red, rogue, lawless stance, or a race enemy
  • Red player: someone below 0 alignment
  • Rogue player: suspicious/gray player
  • Good player: someone at or above 0 alignment AND not suspicious

PVP stances

  • Lawful players can only heal other lawful players and can only damage evil players. They cannot perform unlawful actions except for entering unlawful areas (lawless tiles, enemy player cities, etc.) which turns them rogue and at that point, they are temporarily evil
  • Lawless players are permanently rogue and therefore can perform any unlawful action anywhere. Players cannot enter lawless stance if they are inside an NPC city, in a lawful clan, or in a lawful party


  • Unlawful actions: actions that would make a blue player rogue (if they can even peform them). Inclusive list:
    • Entering a lawless area and remaining for over 30 seconds
    • Entering a non-ally player city and remaining for over 30 seconds
    • Taking an owned mount belonging to someone else
    • Taking an owned raft/ship belonging to someone else
    • Taking an owned warhulk belonging to someone else
    • Buffing an evil player
    • Healing an evil player
    • Reviving an evil player
    • Joining a lawless party
    • Joining a lawless clan alliance
    • Damaging a good player
    • Ganking a good player
    • Assisting on a kill on a good player
    • Looting a player or monster grave belonging to another player


  1. When a player is incapacitated, assists are credited to:
    a. Anyone who dealt more damage than healing to the player in the last 5 minutes
    b. Anyone who did more healing than damage to those who assisted via condition a
    c. Anyone who revived someone who got an assist via a or b
  • These conditions are ideal but we could go without them to limit scope.
  • The damage/heal counters are reset whenever the player actually dies (but not when they are incapacitated)
  • Damage counter should also reset if the victim goes from rogue to blue, to avoid cases where someone goes from a lawless land to lawful and dodges damage long enough to go blue, but then dies, causing assists to happen for "innocent" people
  • Similarly, damage counter should reset if the victim goes from lawful to lawless, to avoid griefing via getting healed -> switching to lawless -> killing a blue


Clans must specify in their settings whether they are lawful. A lawful clan:

  • Cannot accept evil players (including rogue, lawless, or reds)
  • Must only allow races from one alliance. Race changes from members to an enemy race are not allowed (they must first leave the clan by the usual means)
  • Cannot ally a lawless or race enemy clan
  • Cannot change to lawless*
  • This could/should eventually be changed to be doable but require consent from all players and require having no allies

Alignment loss

The only way to lose alignment is to participate in the death (not incapacitation) of a good player whether that's directly or via assisting


  • Parties must be created as lawful or lawless
  • If a player somehow goes evil (including rogue) while in a lawful party, they are automatically kicked
  • Lawless parties cannot invite lawful players
  • Parties cannot change from one setting to the other, nor merge with a party of the opposite setting

Tile ratings

  • Dungeons follow the same lawful/lawless tile rating as the tile they are on. We shouldn't have lawless dungeons inside lawful tiles.
  • Tiles show their rating on the map:
    • Red is lawless
    • Yellow is lawful
    • Blue is capital

Loot rules

  • Evil players always drop their full inventory
  • Good players in capital tiles only drop siege equipment
  • Good players in lawful tiles drop everything except paperdoll

Duel mode

  • Players can challenge other players to a duel via context menu, which must be accepted like a party or trade invite
  • Once accepted, each of those players is put in a duel party. This would function like a normal party with the exception that both duel parties would have special interaction rules between them
  • Once the duel parties are created, more people can be invited (for group duels) but we can have an additional warning message for the person receiving the invite
  • Duel parties cannot be created or accepted inside NPC cities
  • If a duel party player enters an NPC city, they automatically leave the duel party
  • Players in duel parties can damage, heal, gank, etc. each other and the opposing party without going rogue or losing alignment
  • The risks of joining a duel party should be made obvious and the invite stand out in a way that new players won't be easily tricked into joining a duel party to get ganked

+ Future possibilities.
We could eventually add further mechanics such as disabling beheading during duels (from obelisk buff), setting a duel radius where leaving causes a loss, keeping a score, adding wagers, ready checks, changing player name color in targeting component, etc.

How We expect this to play out

  • Lawful players in lawful lands can play with other lawful players including cross heal, rez, etc. with no risk of going rogue via blue blocking and other similar mechanics. At the same time, they are still able to PVP against evil players which are not just reds but also lawless players and race enemies.
  • Friends who want to play different races will face some awkward choices. We expect vets will just roll the same race early on depending on how easy of an early game they want (eg all alfar or mahirim for maximum pvp vs human alliance for least pvp) then switch lawless and race change once they are comfortable enough with progression. Some may just start out red
  • The biggest drawback is the lack of friendly fire between lawful players. In lawful lands, this means lawful players sticking to racial wars will be on even grounds, ie both sides will have no friendly fire and no healing/buffing enemes, while evil players will be at a disadvantage. This last bit is not necessarily a bad thing, but what worries us is players would learn behaviors that will backfire once they enter the end game in lawless areas and they can no longer just aoe without a second thought or have 3 guys meleeing the same person without harming each other.


- The team at Big Picture Games